Sunday, 21st September 2014



OpenTrial - transparency & accountability are essential for justice to be deep rooted in societies.


How does one identify a dysfunctional legal system? Simple! Look for impunity in instances of:


* the sexual abuse of children,


* the rape of women,


* the abuse and murder of those from ethnic minorities,


* corruption in government,


* environmental destruction for profit,


* illegal appropriation of land and other illicit dispossession,


* in-custody abuse, detention/control orders without trial and unfair/secret trials, etc.


Other indicators are:

* the rape and sexual exploitation of female suspects by police,


* the beating and jailing of lawyers who defend their clients too vigorously,


* the perversion of justice by corrupt judges and police,


* extortion by prosecutors that leaves families homeless and penniless,


* the torturing and shooting of suspects by police,


* the hijacking of legal systems to legitimise the use of political power to repress,


* the destruction of business, employment and livelihoods by corrupt police, prosecutors and judges,


* the jailing on trumped-up charges of innocents, many of whom are family breadwinners, by the criminal and corrupt.


Dysfunctional legal systems are, effectively, national immune systems that do not work. They are often commandeered to condone and confer legitimacy on criminality, rather than to combat it. Justice sector reform must acknowledge this if it is to have a chance of developing successful strategies for change.


Click here to read more


"The biggest impediment to freeing the incarcerated innocent, is the cleaving to a social mantle of infallibility by systems that have been tasked with judging the fallibility of citizens."

Facebook - a force for freedom perhaps, but at odds with the rule of law in the U.S.

Does the case of Leader v. Facebook prove that Professor Niall Ferguson of Harvard University, and a fellow of Jesus College, Oxford, is right when he says, "the problem in the United States is such that one can say they no longer have the rule of law there." Indeed, the Executive Opinion Survey, which assesses the rule of law using 15 measures - ranging from the protection of private property rig...


Japanese Prosecutors in the Dock

Super User January-07-2013

Jeff Kingston of Temple University (Japan) says Japanese prosecutors are finding themselves in the dock for abuses of power involving a number of high profile cases that have drawn considerable m...

The State of US Justice

Super User May-24-2012

If you thought weak rule of law only exists in the developing world, think again, for here are some excellent, eye-opening books that expose the shocking erosion of the rule of law in the U.S. ...

Rule of law reform; does it work?

Frank Richardson June-14-2013

In building the rule of law in a nation, the law's interface with society is vital, and one ignores it, not only at the peril of the rule-of-law programme in question; but, more importantly, at t...

Trial Monitoring Apps

fair trial app


Modern technology has the potential to transform legal systems for the better.

One of our focuses is on the production of trial monitoring apps. We adapt software to enable trials to be monitored using checklists on smartphones and tablets, whether online or offline. The results of the monitoring are sent for analysis when there is an internet connection, and reports are produced. 


From around the world we are seeking individuals with the necessary passion and expertise, and in-country partner organisations to work with us on this important project. Those interested are requested to email us at: info[at] .


Legal systems will mete out justice, if they come under sufficient public scrutiny.

Most do not!

A legal system should embody and give expression to its society's highest values.

A society without a properly functioning legal system is like a body without a good immune system.

The result is poor societal health: abuse, conflicts of interest, corruption, cronyism, rights violations, torture - as well as social, political and economic retardation, in both the developed and the developing worlds.

Modern technology offers a cure for ailing systems.

Just as social networking has added a whole new dimension to communication, so Lexposé adds a whole new dimension to legal systems.

It's an innovative adjunct, that also uses social networking. It improves transparency and is a tool for bringing legal systems to account so that they properly serve society.

It profiles police, judges and prosecutors, as well as their institutions.

Wealth audits, salaries, political links, conflicts of interest, training, career paths and much more, can be accessed online.

Public reviews of police, judge and prosecutor conduct will also be accessed online.

By keeping legal system players under open, public scrutiny, it encourages integrity, independence, diligence, equality and impartiality – qualities essential for justice.

Its mandate is to gather and moderate information sensitively and to the highest standards.

Its application is worldwide.

Lexposé will be an invaluable tool for victims of injustice and their friends and families, lawyers, justice/human rights NGOs, consulates, religious and humanitarian groups, academics and students, amongst many others.


Find out more about Lexposé here.


If you too want to see justice sectors exhibit integrity, independence, diligence, equality and impartiality, as they should, then why not get in touch? Email us at: info[at] . We are keen to hear from you. 


opentrial video



"While judicial systems are visibly present in most countries, those that work reasonably well are found in relatively few."- Robert Sherwood,  University of California in Berkeley.


Too often, aided by opacity, the arm of the law is crooked and needs correcting.



Injustice Alerts

Turkey: journalist, lawyers, et al, jailed - some released

In Turkey, some 500 students that are alleged members of terrorist groups, more than 100 journalists, 47 lawyers and thousands of Kurd sympa...

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Injustice Alerts

Torture & abuse in Bahrain

January, 2014: abuse continues with a crackdown on the media. Rihana al Mousawi was working peacefully with the Salvation Army ambulance, he...

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Injustice Alerts

Red Business Warning: Russia

The Economist reports that: "one in six businessmen in Russia has been prosecuted for an alleged economic crime over the past decade." ...

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Reforming Justice

reforming justice

by Livingston Armytage

The rule-of-law industry appears not to know how to get to where it might want to go, nor where it is going, and so cannot tell whether it has arrived.

“Despite massive ongoing investment in both judicial reform and evaluative endeavours, we remain unable to demonstrate success.”

"Deep down we do not know what we are doing," admits a practitioner. Livingston Armytage proposes a paradigm shift.

Click here for more books on justice.

In Association with

Fair Trial Poll

Fair Trial

What do you consider to be the chances of getting a fair trial in your country?

Less than 25%
Between 26% and 50%
Between 76% and 90%
Between 51% and 75%
More than 90%
» Go to poll »
1 Votes left

Origin of Crime Poll

Fear of Crime by Whom?

In the developing world, which crimes do you think are feared the most: those committed by ordinary citizens or those committed by law enforcement agencies?

Law enforcement agencies through violence, corruption and abuse of power.
Ordinary citizens
Add a new response!
» Go to poll »
1 Votes left

The OpenTrial™ Justice Award

Contact us now to nominate a judge, police chief or prosecutor who has shown outstanding courage in applying integrity, diligence and impartiality in his/her work.

albertina ho

Judge Albertina Ho of Indonesia, is nominated for having the courage and integrity to, amongst other things, convict former, mid-level tax official Gayus Tambunan of corruption and for presiding over the case of disgraced prosecutor, Cirus Sinaga, who attempted to help Gayus escape justice by leaking sensitive documents. Her courage now appears to be feared  by the corrupt and religious-intolerant.

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Lover of Justice & Truth

What if we, in this acquisitive and ignoble age, were to revive the ethic of Aristides  "The Just" (530 - 468 B.C.)? A quiet, steady man who loved justice and truth, he was not interested in increasing his own wealth or prestige and despised mercenary motives in public men.

Despite all the trophies he won, he was most proud of the fact that he did not make any profit out of public service. Compare that with the feathering of nests, revolving doors, etc. of today. Read more: Oath for Justice


Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 10: "Everyone is entitled in full equality to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, in the determination of his rights and obligations and of any criminal charge against him."



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