ï»¿Mr. Big: Exposing Undercover Investigations in Canada.
The book talks about false confessions obtained in Mr. Big operation, and wrongful convictions that occur as a result of this operations. After reading the book I was left confused, and disappointed about some of the decisions made by the Criminal Justice System and the RCMP.
I believe that confessions obtained in this type of operations are not reliable, and therefore should not be admissible in court, or as evidence. The confessions should be more investigative tools than evidence, like a polygraph that you use to find more about a case, but the results are not admissible in court as evidence since they are not completely reliable. But if it is going to be admitted in a court of law, I believe that there should be hard evidence against a person to be convicted, an example would be a ...view middle of the document...
E.g. aggressive scenarios, pretended murders, staged kidnaps, and beatings (p.20)
Making the jury believe that the target confessed because they are guilty, to not because of any other reasons. This made me ask why the Criminal Justice system is not doing more to protect society from cops who abuse the system and miss use their power to incriminate people? I understand that law enforcement officers are under a lot of pressure from society to catch criminals, but they should not abuse the power given to them.
The thing that troubled me the most is that in a lot of cases mentioned in the book we see known ways to obtain a false confession being used by the police (P. 44).
E.g. 1) Being lead a person to believe that the situation is unjust and hopeless and that the only way to help themselves is to confess. 2) Convinced a subject that they committed the crime but do not remembers, and confessing is the best course of action. We see this in the Mentuck case.3) the targets were vulnerable and impressionable, they did not have much money, education, and were involved in drugs, alcohol, and were not the smartest people, which are all reasons for false confessions (P.41, 42), also we see manipulation, deception, false promises, threats. Why are police officers allowed to do this?
Ultimately I believe that Mr. Big operations are necessary and that in many cases are very helpful, but there should be more rules about what can be done this operations, and should be closely regulated. Also they should videotape everything that happens in the investigation, that way this operations would be more transparent. I truly believe that with more and stricter regulations, and changes in the Mr. Big operations the number of false confessions in this operations would be lower or non-existent.