Socrates, the philosopher, used to say: “an indication is an indication; two indications are two indications; three indications is evidence”. The sentence contains a requirement in the evaluation of evidence from indications. A mere indication is not enough; something more is necessary.
A few days ago, I met a young Portuguese man who was condemned to life in prison by an English court, based on a single, false indication. The apparent ease with which a foreigner is condemned in the United Kingdom is in contrast with the Socratic requirements and some archiving of crime processes in Portugal.
The conclusion is simple: in Portugal, contrary to the United Kingdom, more is required. That is to say, the foreign suspect is feared and if he is powerful, archiving is always a legal escape and a balm for fearing souls. The abandonment by the Portuguese Government that said citizen suffered, goes to show the disdain that we are subject to, whenever we collide with the police and judicial system of a major power.
The Portuguese State’s interests do not cover its citizens’ defence, leaving them alone and without support. Without the support that was required, the young Portuguese man managed to prove his innocence and now fights for compensation over the damages that he suffered due to the time that he spent in a British prison. He remains without Government support.
in: Correio da Manhã, 19.12.2009