Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Expats may still get indy ref vote

Post Thumbnail

Scottish expats, including those living in England, may get a vote in the referendum if two murderers win their voting appeal this week.

Leslie Moohan and Andrew Gillon claim the ban on prisoners voting on September 18 amounts to a human rights breach.

Their original case was rejected last month but an appeal hearing will be held on Thursday at the UK Supreme Court with Aidan O’Neill QC fighting their corner.

Mr O’Neill says the case paid for by Legal Aid could see Scottish-born expats get the vote on Scotland’s future as it would mean the scrapping of the Franchise Act.

That legislation set out the referendum rules and who could vote in it. The vote is restricted to British, Commonwealth, Irish and EU citizens living in Scotland.

Mr O’Neill said: “This is the fastest appeal hearing in the history of the UK Supreme Court. It shows the constitutional importance it attaches to this case.

“If the prisoners’ challenge succeeds, the parties are agreed the appropriate remedy would be for the court to quash the Franchise Bill and send the matter back to the Scottish Parliament.

“This may allow the Scottish expat issue to be raised again at a domestic political level.”

A complaint about Scottish-born expats being denied the vote is being investigated by the European Commission. It was raised by 25-year-old Scottish lawyer James Wallace, who lives in London and claims the exclusion of the 800,000 Scottish-born expats conflicts with EU freedom of movement laws.

European courts previously ruled banning prisoners from voting is unlawful, but the ruling doesn’t cover referendums.

Murderer Gillon was ordered to serve a minimum term of 12 years in 1998 for a brutal spade attack on Gary Johnstone, 25, in Bathgate. He was due out in 2010 but is still locked up as he’s so dangerous.

Moohan was jailed for a minimum of 15 years in 2008 after murdering father-of-two David Redpath in Edinburgh.

A Scottish Conservative spokesman said: “The idea two murderers should be given the vote is utterly absurd.”

A Scottish Government spokesperson said: “The Government welcomed the decision of the Inner House, Court of Session, to reject the prisoners’ appeal on all grounds.

“We are confident the Supreme Court will take a similar view.”

Like local government and Scottish Parliament elections, the September 18 referendum vote will see the vote restricted to British, Commonwealth, Irish and EU citizens if they live in Scotland. It contrasts with the UK General Election and European example. In those elections only Brits, Commonwealth and Irish can vote if they are British residents. Crucially though, Brits who have lived abroad for less than 15 years can vote in those elections too.