The police fabricated evidence and committed perjury at your trial? Sorry, but there is "no real possibility" that the Court of Appeal will think that your conviction is unsafe.
Anyone who has received this kind of frustrating Statement of Reasons from the Criminal Cases Review Commission will recognise the "no real possibility" conclusion, which ends with the rejection of your application.
This well-researched book tells the story of how the CCRC came to be established, and gives the reasons why it does not function in the way it was intended to function. It explains why apparently rock-solid arguments for referring a case to the Court of Appeal are more often than not flattened under the steamroller of the "no real possibility" test.
There are chapters provided by the voluntary sector, by practitioners and by academics. One chapter heading in particular sums up the effect of the CCRC in five words: "Real Possibility or Fat Chance?"
This book should be read by anyone who is contemplating an application to the Commission. It could save hours of fruitless work on preparing a case which the CCRC is bound to turn down, and could possibly help you to frame an application in ways that stand a chance of being accepted.
(Since writing the above, two people have voted that what I have written is not helpful, which has led me to wonder in what ways it falls short. The original review is as objective as I can make it, and an accurate reflection of the content of the book. If you are looking for an endorsement of the CCRC, this is not the book for you. Michael Naughton writes in the opening chapter that the the "real possibility test" as laid down in the Criminal Appeals Act can mean that the Commission may "sanction the successful appeals of guilty offenders if their convictions satisfy the requirements of the appeal courts, whilst, at the same time, if it turns up evidence that indicates an applicant's factual innocence that was available at the original trial it may not constitute grounds for a referral". In other words, evidence of innocence is not necessarily enough to get a case back to the Court of Appeal:
"...the CCRC does not seek to refer cases of applicants that it finds or believes to be factually innocent. On the contrary, it reviews alleged miscarriages of justice in a legal sense, which is not to be confused with the wrongful conviction of the innocent...: the CCRC is about the correctness or otherwise of convictions according to the legal process."
The change in the law which brought the CCRC into existence was designed to remove the criminal appeal system from political influence, but placed it instead in a legal straitjacket. The book is an analysis of how this change adversely affects those who may be factually innocent but remain in prison because they do not meet the "real possibility test".
I have tried to make the review more helpful. If you don't like the premise of the book, please don't shoot the messenger. But if you think it's an irrevocably bad review, I hope you'll leave a comment to explain why.)