That's the explanation that Terry gave a while back.
To cover a couple of points..
Statute laws are written by Parliament (politicians) and amended by Judges later on.
So you have what's called Statute law, which is the law as written by the politicians, then you have Precedence law which is the amendments judges (at a high enough court) make.
Judges make those amendments to the law with regard to what they think the spirit of the wording of the Statute was. This is how English law has worked for hundreds of years.
Just about every Statute law ever written has ambiguities and anomalies in it, which are cleared up later on if and when they are ruled on by a judge at a high enough court.
Because of the way English law works, nothing is really an absolute offence until it has Precedence behind it, until it does it's open to be amended by a judge at a high enough court.
Now Terry isn't a Barrister but I think he genuinely has shooters interests at heart and when someone (whoever that might have been
) says look... if you push this standard test thing any further, you might just find that it comes and bites you on the ars
e. He was so convinced that he dropped pushing for it.
There are plenty of cases in other laws where the Police and CPS decide not to prosecute even though there's sufficient evidence to get a conviction. And who knows, these might also be the result of a nod and a wink agreement?
I think at the end of the day - the way it was presented by this unknown nodder and winker is that ok, you've got 2 convictions you can cite that probably shouldn't have been convictions. But... if you push this standard test thing to it's conclusion you risk turning that number into thousands of convictions.
We'll probably never know all the details of this, but I believe something like those conversations has happened somewhere behind closed doors and it was convincing enough to make Terry suddenly drop years of campaigning for a standard test.
Thats good enough for me - yeah it sucks, but I can't say that if I were in the same room if I wouldn't have made the same decision that the AMTA made.