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Last Updated: Wednesday, 3 October 2007, 16:59 GMT 17:59 UK
World's End row law chiefs meet
Elish Angiolini
Elish Angiolini defended the statement she made to parliament
Scotland's most senior judge and top prosecutor have met to discuss their recent public row in the wake of the collapsed World's End murder trial.

A judge ruled there was insufficient evidence to proceed with a case against convicted killer Angus Sinclair over the murders 30 years ago.

That led to a terse exchange between Lord Justice General Lord Hamilton and Lord Advocate Elish Angiolini.

However, they have since agreed on the issue of respecting judges' decisions.

Following judge Lord Clarke's decision, Ms Angiolini told Holyrood that she supported a change in the law to allow the Crown to appeal certain criminal cases if they were thrown out of court.

However, Lord Hamilton said her statement cast doubt on the decision of the judge to dismiss a prosecution case.

'Exceptional circumstances'

The Crown Office confirmed that both parties have since met to discuss the issue.

In a statement it said: "They agreed that it is important to respect decisions of the judiciary and that the independence of the judiciary and prosecution service are key to the operation of the criminal justice system.

"It was accepted that, where there is serious public and parliamentary concern, it will sometimes be necessary for the lord advocate to explain more fully the Crown's position in a particular case.

"It is expected that this would only occur in exceptional circumstances.

"In doing so, the lord advocate would always make it absolutely clear that the judge's decision must be respected."


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