• The First Miscarriage of Justice by Jon Robins - book cover

The First Miscarriage of Justice

The ‘Unreported and Amazing’ Case of Tony Stock

by Jon Robins, Foreword by Michael Mansfield QC


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‘I would have been the first miscarriage of justice… There was this spate of cases: the Birmingham Six, Guildford Four and Cardiff Three. Each one was another nail in my coffin’: Tony Stock, 2008. The story of Tony Stock is astonishing: deeply disturbing it sent out ripples of disquiet when he was sentenced to ten years for robbery at Leeds Assizes in 1970. Over the next 40 years the case went to the Court of Appeal four times and has the distinction of being the first to have been referred to that court twice by the Criminal Cases Review Commission. Tony Stock died in 2012 still fighting to clear his name: spending from his meagre savings to hire private investigators and hoping beyond hope to see justice.


‘The story of Tony Stock should be mandatory reading for everyone, not merely those involved with the laws. It concerns the quality of our criminal justice system and its serious reluctance and unwillingness to root out injustice’– Michael Mansfield QC.

‘The story is compelling & Jon Robins tells it well. Students would do well to read it as a guide to its times … the book demonstrates that the enduring villain of the Tony Stock case was the recalcitrance of the high judiciary in the Court of Appeal. That may well not have changed as much as has policing. Read this book and be convinced that it should’– New Law Journal.

‘One of the most outrageous miscarriages of justice of modern times’– Barry Sheerman, Labour MP for Huddersfield.

‘This fascinating, atmospheric and important book highlights a shameful truth, that even now, 25 years after the release of the Guildford Four, the English legal system has great difficulty admitting that it is capable of getting things wrong’– barristerblogger.com

As featured in the Independent and Inside Time.

In the Press

‘If anyone seriously believes the Court of Appeal has reformed itself since the dark days of the Birmingham Six and Bridgewater Four, they should study the unreported and amazing case of Tony Stock’: Private Eye.

‘I would have thought that the injustice done to Tony (Stock) was fairly self-evident and yet his conviction still stands. I find this very difficult to accept’: Ralph Barrington, investigations adviser at the Criminal Cases Review Commission.

‘The fight for justice that will not die’: Yorkshire Post.


Jon Robins uses Stock’s epic campaign as a way of exploring the treatment of miscarriages of justice over the last four decades. He has been writing about law and justice for the national and specialist press for many years, including about the Stock case for The Times, Guardian and others. He is the founder of www.thejusticegap.com (an online magazine about law and justice).

The Foreword

Mike Mansfield is one of the country’s leading lawyers. Known for his campaigning-style and preparedness to see representation for all, he is the author of Memoirs of a Radical Lawyer (Bloomsbury, 2010).

Additional information

Weight368 g
Dimensions234 × 156 × 14 mm

Foreword author

Michael Mansfield QC


Waterside Press




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Place of origin

United Kingdom

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