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This is a Holding Statement
by the former trustees of the Charity
jole rider Friends    

This short statement has been released in relation to recent posts by the media about the Charity jole rider.  

These posts by the media have all emanated from information issued to them by the Charity Commission. To date, not one invitation to respond [via right of reply] has been received.

The information issued by the Charity Commission defames the former Trustee and the Charity's founders: David Swettenham and Helen King.

Legal advice confirms there is a strong defamation case against the Charity Commission, on the basis of the material published and circulated by the Commission on 10 Jan 20.

Astonishingly, the Charity Commission's defence would be to rely upon their government awarded right to claim Qualified Privilege. For those unfamiliar with this term, it means the Commission can say whatever it likes with total immunity.  That is, whatever the Commission likes to say about anyone, even if it knows the statement to be false. The reality is that the Commission remains fully protected by law. Unless, that is, it can be proved that the Commission acted with malice.

This position is similar to that of a foreign diplomat - their relatives or staff - claiming diplomatic immunity to protect them, irrespective of their crime in this country.
The public have seen this tragic and unfair scenario play out recently in real life.    


Before the Charity Commission published their posts, they gave the former Trustees sight of their Inquiry report for comment.  The report is understood to have been written by Janet Mernane, being the person who, as the Lead Investigator, orchestrated the Commission’s woeful Inquiry into the Charity’s affairs. 

Note: Mention of an Inquiry having been conducted is itself distinctly misleading, since no semblance of an Inquiry was ever conducted by the Commission.

The former Trustees responded directly to Helen Stephenson, Chief Executive Officer [CEO] of the Charity Commission, with their comments.
That response to the Commission's Inquiry report was contained in an Open Letter, dated 16 Dec 19, which can be read here.
The letter was totally ignored by the Commission.


The former Trustees’ preferred way forward is not to pursue a legal action against the Charity Commission.  This is due to the lengthy time it would take to bring the case to court and, not least, the up-front funding needed to pursue it. 
This preference is despite the former Trustees holding evidence that the Commission undeniably acted with malice.


The preferred way forward is to follow a different and transparent path. A much more open and quicker path to achieve a fair and just outcome, not just for this Charity and its former Trustees - but also other similarly affected Charities and their Trustees all having their own stories.


There are NEWS stories and then there are TRUE stories

You decide

With a particular and classic film script in mind, all that the former Trustees wish to add at this time is the following:

People can read whatever is given to them to read.
They can believe whatever they want to believe.
Life for them will remain as it was.
This is the result of choosing the BLUE pill.


Alternatively, they can keep an open mind.
They can choose the RED pill
and enter a different world 
- a different reality.

They will then see how deep the rabbit hole goes.

Blue Pill
Red Pill

Authors: Helen King and David Swettenham

jole rider
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