The Law
I Declare
Stolen Isles
Wir Islands, Wir Future

.........The Sovereign Nation of Shetland



The Cunningsburgh Shop:

Not exactly imposing, but it's a start!

In September 2015 the village shop in Cunningsburgh, the village where I live, came up for sale at auction. It was a repossession sale by RBS. Having for some time been looking for a territorial base for The Sovereign Nation of Shetland (SNS) and sensing the possibility of another court case, I went to the auction and put in the highest bid. The reasoning behind that was that I didn't mind locking horns with the bank, my old adversary, but I did not want to involve anyone purchasing in good faith.

As soon as I got home, I cancelled the deposit cheque and sent the auctioneers a letter saying I claimed the allodial title of the shop on the basis of my earlier claim for the whole of Shetland. My intention was to provoke the bank into civil action against me for another chance to challenge the jurisdiction of the courts.

On 23 September I took possession. Although the front door was locked, the side door only had a piece of wood leaning against the inside to keep it closed. I went in, put a notice in the front window saying it was the property of The Sovereign Nation of Shetland and not part of Scotland or the UK. I secured the side door with a padbolt and padlock. All this was in broad daylight in the afternoon in full view of any passers-by on the busy main road to the airport - hardly the actions of a criminal.

I then wrote to Royal Bank of Scotland, Shetland Islands Council, The First Minister of Scotland, The Prime Minister, Police Scotland, Registers of Scotland and Scottish Courts and Tribunal Service to inform them of my actions and that The Sovereign Nation of Shetland claimed the allodial title of the shop.

I followed this up with a public notice in The Shetland Times - there could be no doubt that The Sovereign nation of Shetland was making a serious claim.

On 25 September I had an appointment to meet Chief Inspector Lindsay Tulloch on a matter relating to the Carmichael case. As soon as I arrived at 3pm I was ambushed - taken into custody on suspicion of vandalism at the shop. Although I pointed out that the matter of ownership was a civil matter and nothing to do with the police and that I could hardly be accused of vandalising my own property, I was arrested, then released on an undertaking to appear in court in October.

Meanwhile, the police (or somebody working under their authority) had broken into the shop, taken down my notice and resecured the door with a new padlock, which was given to the second bidder at the auction, a local solicitor. What the police were doing interfering in what was obviously a civil matter is anybody's guess.

In preparation, I sent the court a Notice of Lack of Jurisdiction. As that document points out, the court cannot proceed without hearing proof of its jurisdiction from the party bringing the case.

Before going into the dock I protested that the court had no jurisdiction. I was immediately arrested and taken to police cells, where a hearing was held in the cell (!) and I was remanded until the next hearing in 4 weeks time. Within 30 minutes I was in the prison van on my way to Peterhead jail, where I spent 2 weeks before getting a bail hearing.

At that hearing, the procurator fiscal dropped the case and I was released. The small matter of my having spent two weeks in jail was explained by the fact that, had I been convicted of contempt of court, the sentence would have been four weeks - I'd served two, so the sentence was served. The fact that I had neither been accused, nor convicted of contempt did not seem to matter.

The problem was that I had a whole lot of evidence against the police and the procurator fiscal, which was now effectively buried; the court had not heard any proof of its jurisdiction, so what to do next?

The obvious answer was to re-take possession of the shop. I cannot release any details of what happened next, except to say that I was again taken into custody by the police and am once again accused of vandalism. Extraordinary bail conditions stipulate that I must not challenge the jurisdiction of the court and that I must not contact the court, the procurator fiscal, or any of the court officials. Everybody's a bit jumpy.

However, I can now release documentation referring to the first case, which you will find here.

UPDATE: I re-took the shop. The police barged in and arrested me again and charged me with vandalism again. In this new case I've asked for more information to be disclosed, the procurator fiscal refused, I asked the Sheriff to review the refusal and he, predictably came down on the side of the PF. I appealed to the Sheriff Appeal Court, where I set out the whole of what I wanted and why. I lost the appeal, but the important thing is that all the information I had from the first case was locked up and I faced a prison sentence if I revealed it. It's now in the public domain, so I can publish all the sordid details.

Full text of my Statement to The Sheriff Appeal Court is here.

Court hearings on the second alleged vandalism culminated with a preliminary hearing on 18th January 2017 - the day before my birthday – at which I started to give reasons why the Sheriff should recuse himself for reasons of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice. Because I had a lot to say, that was cut short. I was promised a full hearing and a hearing to arrange a date for a full hearing arranged for the 20th. At that hearing I was told I would be allowed 20 minutes to present my case – somehow this was not being taken seriously.

The 'full hearing' was on the 30th and started with the sheriff telling me he would stick strictly to the 20 minutes . I said he might want to change his mind when he heard what I had to say. While at the previous hearing he had been interacting with me, this time there was no response while I gave evidence and proof of his wrongful arrest and a hearing for contempt of court of which I was not notified, was not charged, had no opportunity to defend myself (because I was in the police cells), was convicted and sentence to 28 days imprisonment. I was completely shocked at the blatant and arrogant disregard for justice. At the end he said he had done everything according to law and to his judicial oath. How he equated that with the conspiracy and perversion of the course of justice I had described is beyond me. The record of the proceedings is here.