One hundred members of Parliament called Monday for the dismissal of Britain's chief justice, who handled the unsuccessful appeal of six Irishmen jailed for more than 16 years over the worst case of Irish Republican Army terrorism on the British mainland.
Analysts said the bill urging removal of the Lord Chief Justice Geoffrey Lane, presented in the House of Commons, had little chance because passage would require support of the government and the House of Lords.In accord with legal custom, the measure, sponsored by all major political parties, asks that "a humble address be presented to Her Majesty praying that she be pleased to remove the Lord Chief Justice from office."
The effort, only the second time since World War II that calls have been made for the resignation of a British chief justice, came four days after freedom was granted to the defendants, known as the "Birmingham Six."
The six Northern Irishmen were imprisoned in Britain for more than 16 years for two 1974 pub bombings in Birmingham that killed 21 people and injured scores more. On Thursday the Court of Appeal overturned their convictions and set them free.
Home Secretary Kenneth Baker along with senior judges came to Lord Lane's defense Monday, calling for him to stay on in his post.