A FATHER who campaigned for a change in the justice system in the wake of his daughter’s murder has said he does not support the introduction of sharia law in the UK.
John and Penny Clough’s daughter Jane, who was 26 at the time, was murdered by her ex-partner, Jonathan Vass on 2010.
Last week, Mr Clough, from Higherford, was asked to give his views on sharia law as part of Channel 4’s 4Thought series which examined the subject from five different viewpoints.
In the two-minute slot he talked about aspects of sharia law where in cases of pre-meditated murder, the judge does not pass the sentence and the victim’s family have far more input into the punishment and retribution meted out to the criminal.
Vass was handed a 30 year-sentence for murder after he was released on bail having been charged with rape and assault offences against her.
Mr Clough said: “I do not support the introduction of sharia law in the UK, indeed there are many aspects of it that are repugnant.
“What I have said is that there are aspects of it that could be discussed and considered as an additional victim protection within UK law, a bit like cherry picking some aspects.
“During the recording of the programme I stated several time that I do not or did not support sharia, as my wife will back me up.
“I am not ashamed to want retribution as the current justice system is a farce and my family was treated terribly by it.
“Penny and I want the UK justice system to be as robust as it can be, and if that involves looking around the world at other systems of law and learning from them I welcome that.”
Last year, the Government amended the law on bail to allow prosecutors to challenge judges' bail decisions in the Court of Appeal.
The amendment was dubbed “Jane's Law”.
Mr Clough said he and his wife would continue fighting on other issues such as holding judges accountable for the decisions they make and getting domestic abuse risk assessments to be read in open court.
He said: “Judges are so protected. They hold us accountable for the decisions we make in life but they are not accountable themselves. It should be open and transparent.
“Every police force does risk assessments on the danger to victims of domestic violence, honour crime and stalking.
“We know Jane was at the upper end of this scale but it couldn’t be heard in open court and made available to prosecutors.”