The Home Office is attempting to censor or to use possible legal injunctions against the whistleblower Steve Moxon, and Imprint Academic the publishers of his forthcoming book, "The Great Immigration Scandal". according to the Sunday Times
It is possible that an injunction will also be served against the Sunday Times, which was the newspaper which first published Steve Moxon's story. as it seems to be planning to publish extracts from the book.
One would have thought that a politician as cunning and experienced as the Home Secretary David Blunkett would obey the political maxim "when you are in a hole, you should stop digging it even deeper".
Neither of the whistleblowers Steve Moxon nor James Cameron, the former British Consul in Bucharest, should have been penalised, for what have turned out to be truthful allegations,
There are no issues of national security involved in these whistleblower revelations, only policy muddles and mismanagement, revelations about which which are clearly in the public interest, a fact confirmed by the resignation of the Home Office Minister Beverly Hughes.
If both whistleblowers had been dealt with fairly after the resignation of the Minister, then, in all probability this book would never have been written, and the whole matter would have been forgotten by now.
Why is the Treasury allowing such a waste of public money on frivolous and vindictive legal threats ? The taxpayer is already facing the prospect of having to pay out substantial compensation and damages when these cases come before an employment tribunal.
This is exactly the reason why Parliament passed the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998 in the first place.
Even the Tory party leadership must surely support these whistleblowers, and condemn the attempts to censor the book,
It is ironical that the Tory Leader of the Opposition Michael Howard and Shadow Home Secretary David Davis chose to attack the alleged legal "compensation culture" and the Human Rights Act last week.
This week they should be seen to be supporting Steve Moxon in his case for compensation , under the Public Interest Disclosure Act, and his Fundamental Human Right to free speech under the Human Rights Act section 12 Freedom of Expression, which also deals with publications in the public interest.
Both of these seem to be under attack by the Labour Government.
How likely is it that David Blunkett or any other Ministers will swear never to publish an autobiography or diary revealing details of their time in office, or will these be exclusively full of "kiss and tell" scandals ?
Full text of the Sunday Times article, in case it is removed offline, as a result of the threatened legal action by the Home Office:
August 29, 2004
Blunkett to silence whistleblower
THE home secretary, David Blunkett, is preparing to take legal action to block publication of a book by a Home Office whistleblower that exposes the shambles of the government?s immigration policy.
Blunkett last week instructed government lawyers to warn the book?s publishers that they have ?unlawfully induced? the whistleblower, Steve Moxon, to break his employment contract.
The Treasury Solicitor?s Department reinforced the threat last Friday when it sent a letter demanding that Moxon and Keith Sutherland, head of Imprint Academic, his publishers, sign an undertaking not to release the book or allow extracts of it to be published until government lawyers had had a chance to read it.
Gordon McDowall, an official at the department, said his client, the Home Office, needed ?a reasonable opportunity to review the manuscript, to identify any text which Mr Moxon?s duties of contract and of confidence prevent him from lawfully disclosing?.
However, neither Sutherland nor Moxon had given any undertaking by the government?s deadline of 5pm on Friday.
The book, The Great Immigration Scandal, is being published this week and the appearance of an extract in The Sunday Times today is likely to bring the prospect of legal action closer.
In the book Moxon reveals fresh details of the scandal which led to the resignation of Beverley Hughes, the immigration minister, earlier this year.
Moxon worked as a junior administrative officer processing applications from foreign migrants to work, study or marry in Britain. He describes how senior officials ordered staff to waive the usual checks on businessmen and students seeking to live in Britain.
?The attitude to applications for residency at the department was that if it arrives on your desk then you should grant it, if at all possible, because if you don?t the applicant will disappear and stay in the country illegally,? he writes.
?To reduce the massive numbers of those gaining illegal entry or ? much more commonly ? overstaying, a proportion of asylum seekers was simply allocated to our department for processing, and was granted leave to stay.?
The claim will infuriate Blunkett and Tony Blair because, if true, it exposes much of their immigration and asylum policy as built on deceit.
Moxon tried to complain to his superiors that immigration rules were being broken by staff. But his protests were ignored and he decided to blow the whistle to The Sunday Times. He was immediately suspended. Last month he was told he was to be dismissed.
Moxon and James Cameron ? the former British consul in Bucharest, who was also suspended after he blew the whistle on a visa scam there ? plan to take the government to employment tribunals. "