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  1. #1
    CC FIDE Master Phil Bourke's Avatar
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    What does the arbiter do?

    AC raised this matter in an unsavoury manner in another thread and upon Ian's good suggestion, I will transfer the 'serious' debate to this forum if that is allowed.

    Taking the recent NCC example, my question is just what restrictions are on the arbiter in cases like this?

    Granted that peering over a cubicle wall infringes normal expectations it does seem quite appropriate by an arbiter in the execution of his duty if he is legitimately checking on suspicous behaviour that may include cheating.

    So is an arbiter permitted to do this, or is he constrained by the conventions of the general populus?

    Is a male arbiter able to ask another female who isn't an arbiter to check on a female in similar circumstances? I think that is one boundary that I don't want to cross.
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  2. #2
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    For the purpose of the discussion I take it we are considering circumstances similar to the recent issue but where the arbiter is fairly certain but not so completely confident to take the same approach, or physically can't (for instance not tall enough, or no gap over the door).

    The Laws of Chess seem to give the arbiter a fair amount of discretion to do what is necessary to deal with matters not specifically covered (Article 13 and the Preface). The arbiter could initially ask the player, on emerging from the toilet, to accompany them to the arbiters' room. The immediate reaction (guilt, alarm) would already give a bit of a hint.

    Of course an arbiter would only go these lengths after becoming reasonably certain something is happening, as did happen at Manly.

    The arbiter can then explain that the player seems to be visiting the toilet a lot and questions have been asked so they would like to see the contents of the player's pockets. Having found the hand-held device the arbiters then have to address the question of whether there is anything on it to prove guilt, such as still being warm, a history file, saved position etc.

    However like decisions in any sport it's not a court of law, there is no presumption of innocence, right to remain silent etc. If the player refuses to answer or answers evasively then I'd suggest that unexplained toilet visits and unexplained possession of a hand-held device are sufficient grounds for at least default of the game. Should an appeals committee disagree then so be it, but the arbiter has to make a decision one way or the other.

    This is similar to the approach taken in other cheating allegation cases where, for instance, a player who was beating GMs was asked to play a blitz game with his headwear off.

    Probably it would be harder to get a two-year suspension on evidence less conclusive than being caught red-handed, though it should be noted that in most of the other cheating cases the offender hasn't been back anyway.

  3. #3
    CC Grandmaster antichrist's Avatar
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    It seems like that Dennis wants to paid up front before offering a lawyer's advice

  4. #4
    CC Grandmaster Denis_Jessop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by antichrist
    It seems like that Dennis wants to paid up front before offering a lawyer's advice
    i don't want to be paid at all. Nor am I prepared to purport to give any formal legal advice on this forum on any question. Opinions that I express are personal opinions that may, on occasions, be influenced by my having training and experience in law.

    In the present case I'd just point out that the role of an arbiter is to see that the Laws of Chess are strictly enforced (Laws: Art. 13.1) and that, without expressing a view one way or the other on the facts here, evidence that is illegally obtained is not thereby inadmissible.

    DJ
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  5. #5
    CC Grandmaster antichrist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Denis_Jessop
    i don't want to be paid at all. Nor am I prepared to purport to give any formal legal advice on this forum on any question. Opinions that I express are personal opinions that may, on occasions, be influenced by my having training and experience in law.

    In the present case I'd just point out that the role of an arbiter is to see that the Laws of Chess are strictly enforced (Laws: Art. 13.1) and that, without expressing a view one way or the other on the facts here, evidence that is illegally obtained is not thereby inadmissible.

    DJ
    should not it read admissible like in normal court procedures and justice to prevail

    thanks for implying that it was illegal to peep

  6. #6
    CC Grandmaster Basil's Avatar
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    Is that a double negative in your pocket or am I simply stupid? ;)

    Hi Denis

    I'm having difficulty with the quoted text. Is it possible to rephrase it in the post please - or at least offer a paraphrase?

    Cheers
    H

    Quote Originally Posted by Denis_Jessop
    ... and that, without expressing a view one way or the other on the facts here, evidence that is illegally obtained is not thereby inadmissible.

    DJ
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  7. #7
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    I read that quote as: "Evidence obtained illegally can't be used to build a case".

  8. #8
    CC Grandmaster antichrist's Avatar
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    luckly we did not pay Dennis up front, he would need second helpings to explain himself. Maybe the chess laws is as Dennis states, they are a rule unto themselves?
    Last edited by antichrist; 27-02-2009 at 07:44 PM.

  9. #9
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zwischenzug
    I read that quote as: "Evidence obtained illegally can't be used to build a case".
    That's not what he's saying. In fact, he's saying that illegality wouldn't necessarily prevent using the evidence, rather than that it would.

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil Bourke
    Is a male arbiter able to ask another female who isn't an arbiter to check on a female in similar circumstances?
    Yes. An arbiter can deputise any person to act as an assistant arbiter - for instance this is often done in cases where there are many time scrambles on at the same time and not enough arbiters to go around.

  10. #10
    CC Grandmaster Desmond's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zwischenzug
    I read that quote as: "Evidence obtained illegally can't be used to build a case".
    I read it the opposite way, that it could be used.

  11. #11
    CC Grandmaster Denis_Jessop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gunner Duggan
    Hi Denis

    I'm having difficulty with the quoted text. Is it possible to rephrase it in the post please - or at least offer a paraphrase?

    Cheers
    H
    I thought what i said was clear but I'll expand.

    First AC's allegation that I implied that the arbiter's action was illegal is just silly - I made it specifically clear that I made no comment on that matter.

    Secondly, it is an established legal principle that the fact that evidence was illegally obtained does not necessarilly render it inadmissible. You could say that illegally obtained evidence is neverthless admissible though, as a bald statement, that is less accurate.

    In fact, as this was not a legal proceeding, the point is not 100% relevant anyway.

    DJ
    ...I don't want to go among mad people Alice remarked, "Oh, you can't help that," said the Cat: we're all mad here. I am mad. You're mad." "How do you know I'm mad?" said Alice. "You must be," said the Cat ,"or you wouldn't have come here."

  12. #12
    CC Grandmaster Basil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Denis_Jessop
    I thought what i said was clear but I'll expand.
    You possibly were clear, and I appreciate your development.

    Quote Originally Posted by Denis_Jessop
    Secondly, it is an established legal principle that the fact that evidence was illegally obtained does not necessarilly render it inadmissible.
    This I didn't know and, having expected the opposite, was the cause of my confusion.

    Thanks

    H
    Last edited by Basil; 28-02-2009 at 02:21 AM.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boris
    I read it the opposite way, that it could be used.
    Doh! That's right. Like gunner, expected that it isn't admissible and accidentally skipped right past the word 'NOT' in 'not necessarily'.

  14. #14
    CC Grandmaster Denis_Jessop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gunner Duggan
    You possibly were clear, and I appreciate your development.


    This I didn't know and, having expected the opposite, was the cause of my confusion.

    Thanks

    H
    The rule is also the opposite of what one would expect (myself included) and so is subject to all sorts of qualifications. I don't know much about them as the criminal law, where the matter mostly comes up, is not an area in which I had any practical involvement. I think that its justification lies in the difficulty of obtaining evidence by legal means in some cases particularly of major crimes where the criminals are skilled at avoiding detection.

    DJ
    ...I don't want to go among mad people Alice remarked, "Oh, you can't help that," said the Cat: we're all mad here. I am mad. You're mad." "How do you know I'm mad?" said Alice. "You must be," said the Cat ,"or you wouldn't have come here."

  15. #15
    CC Grandmaster Garvinator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Denis_Jessop
    I think that its justification lies in the difficulty of obtaining evidence by legal means in some cases particularly of major crimes where the criminals are skilled at avoiding detection.
    I believe it comes under two areas, one which you mention, where police are able to use deception as part of their investigation techniques ie lying to a suspect about facts of a case. The presumption under law being that the guilty person would know that what the police officer is saying is a lie and would deny is anyways, so would not admit to it.

    As for the admission of illegally obtained information, my understanding is that it comes down to whose legal rights were violated. While the information/evidence may have been illegally obtained, if your rights were not PERSONALLY violated, you may not have any right to object to its admission.

    As for chess tournaments, your rights are even more curtailed in this area because by entering the tournament which plays under the fide laws of chess, you are agreeing to not leaving the playing area while it is your turn to move, that the arbiter is to enforce all laws of chess etc.

    Of course within the bounds of the laws of the state/country that the tournament is being played in but I don't believe the laws of chess are framed in a way that violate the laws of any state/country

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