The Al-Sweady Public Inquiry, chaired by former High Court judge Sir Thayne Forbes, was an inquiry into allegations that British soldiers mistreated and murdered Iraqi detainees in 2004. It was announced in November 2009, began full public hearings on 4 March 2013, and published its report on 17 December 2014. The report, together with transcripts of hearings and other background material, is available here on its archived web site.
Pension and compensation schemes for the UK armed forces and veterans communities are provided by Veterans UK, a part of the Ministry of Defence. This section of the GOV.UK web site has information, guidance and other material relating to the Armed Forces Pension Schemes 1975, 2005 and 2015.
Aspals Legal Pages is aimed primarily at military and international lawyers involved in court martial defence work in the UK. Content includes: “Quick links for practitioners” consisting of an A-Z list of topics; a “Links” section covering links to useful internet sites; “Cases” which has a list of case summaries. There is also a password-restricted section accessible by those making a donation.
Baha Mousa was an Iraqi civilian who died in Iraq in September 2003 while in the custody of British soldiers. A public inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the death of Baha Mousa and the treatment of other Iraqi citizens who were detained with him in Basra was chaired by Sir William Gage. Documents on the site, now archived in the UK Government Web Archive, include transcripts of hearings, evidence, key documents, FAQs, press notices, and the inquiry’s report, published 8 September 2011. (The report is also available on the GOV.UK site.)
A review of the circumstances surrounding the deaths of four soldiers at Princess Royal Barracks, Deepcut, between 1995 and 2002 was carried out by Nicholas Blake QC (later Mr Justice Blake). The full text of his report, published 29 March 2006, is available here on the GOV.UK web site.
The First-tier Tribunal (War Pensions and Armed Forces Compensation) hears appeals from ex-servicemen or women in England and Wales relating to the two schemes that provide compensation for injuries in the Armed Forces – the War Pensions Scheme and the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme. Formerly known as the Pensions Appeal Tribunal, it has formed the War Pensions and Armed Forces Compensation Chamber of the First-tier Tribunal since 3 November 2008. This section of the GOV.UK web site provides information on the appeal process, with links to legislation and procedural rules.
The Judge Advocate General (JAG) is the chief judge of the Court Martial, which tries Service men and women for serious criminal offences, and the Office of the Judge Advocate General (OJAG) is a part of the Judicial Office. This section within the Courts and Tribunals Judiciary website (the Judicial Office’s site) provides what is described as an informal guide to the Service justice system, together with official guides to Court Martial practice, procedure and sentencing.
The Byelaws Review team is carrying out a far reaching overview and update of byelaws as they relate to all MOD sites in the UK. This section of the GOV.UK site provides a collection of byelaws regulating the use of land being used for military purposes. These can be viewed by selecting byelaws by region. The site covers the whole of the UK and includes (as well as current byelaws) lapsed, revoked and proposed new byelaws.
Service Inquiries (SI) are internal inquiries by the Armed Forces into military incidents which have resulted in death or serious injury. The present SI system was introduced in 2008, replacing various other types of formal inquiry including Boards of Inquiry (BOI). The Ministry of Defence provides access here on the GOV.UK site to all Service Inquiry reports published to date, a number of BOI reports, Military Aircraft Accident Summaries (MAAS) and other inquiry reports. A link is provided to the Manual of Service Law.
This section of the GOV.UK web site makes available for download selected publications within the Ministry of Defence’s Joint Service Publication (JSP) series, including the Manual of Service Law (JSP 830) and the Joint Service Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict (JSP 383). The Manual of Service Law provides a guide to the new legal regime introduced by the Armed Forces Act 2006 and replaced with effect from 31 October 2009 the Manual of Naval Law, the Manual of Military Law, and the Manual of Air Force Law.
The Pensions Appeal Tribunal Scotland hears appeals from ex-servicemen and women in Scotland who have had their claims for a war pension rejected by the Secretary of State for Defence. It deals with both the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme and the War Pension Scheme. Besides legislation and information on the appeal process, the site has a set of Medical Appendices which provide basic information on a range of medical conditions.
The post of Service Complaints Ombudsman for the Armed Forces replaced that of Service Complaints Commissioner on 1 January 2016. The site has information on the role of the Ombudsman, details of the complaint procedure, forms, guidance, and annual reports, including those of the Service Complaints Commissioner.
The Service Prosecuting Authority (SPA) was formed on 1 January 2009 by a merger of the Army Prosecuting Authority, the Naval Prosecution Authority and the Royal Air Force Prosecution Authority. Its web site includes information on the evolution of Service law and SPA’s role within it, and a brief description of the military criminal justice system. There are also press releases, policy documents and annual reports.
The military law section of the World Legal Information Institute’s web site provides links to military law resources by country, commentaries, treaties, inter-governmental organisations and law journals. Some of the country sections are fuller than others.