Joint enterprise: more than 10,000 people ask PM David Cameron to reform unjust lawPosted: March 18, 2015
Families of prisoners march to 10 Downing Street to make their voices heard
Joint enterprise allows more than one person to be charged and convicted of the same crime. A defendant can be convicted of murder even if they had no intention of causing serious harm and didn’t take a direct part in the crime.
We explained what the law is and why it is controversial here.
Not guilty by association
Jengba (Joint Enterprise: Not Guilty by Association) organised the demonstration and petition to call for an end to the joint enterprise law. Jengba represents over 500 people who claim to have been wrongly convicted of murder or manslaughter under the law.
The crowd was largely made up of the families of people imprisoned under this law. Here are some pictures we took…
Many were carrying placards and banners displaying the photos of their loved ones who had been imprisoned.
Some families had travelled from Bradford, Liverpool and Manchester just to attend the demonstration.
Actor Jimmy McGovern and some of the cast of his film ‘Common’ – a BBC drama based on stories of people locked up under the joint enterprise law – attended the demonstration in support of the group’s campaign.
Gloria Morrison, the director of Jengba who we interviewed previously, said that whilst it might not be the biggest petition, the public demonstration was still very significant.
“The prisoners have been phoning their families and saying “Did it happen, did it happen?” like it really means something. The only way we are going to get our loved ones freed from prison is by keep chipping away at this [law].”
— Jan Cunliffe (@Jliffe) March 17, 2015
A modern day child catcher
The Supreme Court is hearing a case involving joint enterprise at the moment. Gloria Morrison, said this was solely down to their tireless campaigning.
“They are looking at these issues and its because of our campaign. No other reason. It’s because of a campaign like ours that is made up of common people fighting for a common cause that doesn’t make any common sense.”
She went on to say how new families were always joining the cause. Some had children as young as 13 imprisoned under this law . She described the law as “the modern day child catcher”.