THE BAN THAT NEVER WAS
After I had come before Sheriff Taylor in court in Aberdeen on the 4th March 2015 to receive his sentencing remarks, I was informed by my Junior Counsel, Fred McIntosh, of Terra Firma Chambers, that in order to retain my freedom, I should never again speak of Hollie Greig anywhere in the world for the rest of my life.
By doing so, Mr McIntosh solemnly warned me, I was liable to face a five-year prison sentence.
This seemed oddly draconian, even by Scottish justice standards and at the time I was curious as to why Sheriff Taylor had made no mention of this in court. As the weeks went by, I received nothing in writing to substantiate the condition that Mr McIntosh assured me I was living under.
I approached my then MP, David Mowat, who subsequently became Health Minister, to assist over this curious matter, as I needed to know exactly where I stood under Scottish law.
Mr Mowat thus wrote to the Chief Executive of the Scottish Courts system, Mr Eric McQueen, in order to clarify this extraordinary issue.
Mr McQueen replied to say that no such condition had ever been placed upon me.
Then why had Mr McIntosh warned me of a condition that simply did not exist?
I trust that this had nothing to do with the fact that Elish Angiolini, a central figure in the Hollie Greig case, was an advocate at the same Terra Firma Chambers.
Therefore, in fairness, I would welcome some explanation from Mr McIntosh or anyone at Terra Firma Chambers about this issue, which I would be happy to publish in full.