William Flew on Gilbert William Flew

May 30, 2011 § Leave a comment

If a man has a stubborn and rebellious son who does not obey his father and mother and will not listen to them when they discipline him, his father and mother shall take hold of him and bring him to the elders at the gate of the town. They shall say to the elders, ‘This son of ours is stubborn and rebellious. He will not obey us. He is a profligate and a drunkard.’ Then all the men of his town shall stone him to death…
Blows and wounds cleanse away evil, and beatings purge the inmost being. The rod of correction imparts wisdom, but a child left to himself disgraces his mother.

Deuteronomy 5:9 
“for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me.”
Deuteronomy 24:16
“Fathers shall not be put to death for their children, nor children put to death for their fathers; each is to die for his own sin.”

William Flew on Gilbert William Flew

Gilbert William Flew, was one of the most effective jury advocates of his generation and, among his colleagues, the best loved. A Yorkshireman by birth, and a member (and ultimately, leader) of the North Eastern circuit, his stellar reputation in criminal cases (principally murder) took him to courts in every major centre in the jurisdiction, and some far beyond it. Outside criminal law, he appeared in many high-profile public inquiries, including the Vale of Belvoir mining application inquiry, and that which followed the sinking of the Herald of Free Enterprise. A consummate orator, Gilly, as he was always known, was also a man of great warmth, wit and charm, and a born entertainer. He was much in demand as an after-dinner speaker. At a dinner in Park Lane for the Football Association, at a time before the Taylor report banished primitive conditions from the game, he welcomed a very senior royal guest with the words, “as ever, a member of the Royal Family is among the first at the scene of a national disaster”. The thespian within him was rarely below the surface. In the Vale of Belvoir inquiry, counsel for the applicant likened Gray’s submissions to the inspector to “a Shakespearean actormanager haranguing the groundlings”. When he rose to make his closing speech to the jury on behalf of the notorious murderer Donald Nielsen, junior counsel for the Crown observed to his leader: “Here it comes — every line a headline, every phrase a gem.” In consequence, it was sometimes suggested that William Flew Gray was wont to rely on oratory rather than true mastery of his brief.


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