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 Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed Al Megrahi

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PostSubject: Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed Al Megrahi   Thu Sep 04, 2008 5:10 pm

Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed Al Megrahi
Date Referred to Court:
28 June 2007
Offence:
Murder
Date of Conviction:
31 January 2001
Appeal Outcome:
not yet determined
Date of Appeal Outcome:
not yet determined
Judgment:
not yet determined

NEWS RELEASE
ABDELBASET ALI MOHMED AL MEGRAHI
28 June 2007
The Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission (“the Commission”)
has today referred the case of Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed Al Megrahi (“the
applicant”) to the High Court of Justiciary.
As a result of the Commission’s decision the applicant is entitled to a further
appeal against his conviction for the murder of 270 people who died following
the bombing of Pam Am flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland on 21 December
1988.
In accordance with the Commission’s statutory obligations, a statement of the
reasons for its decision has been sent to the High Court, the applicant, his
solicitor, and Crown Office. The Commission has no power under statute to
make copies of its statements of reasons available to the public. However,
given the worldwide interest in this case, and the fact that there has been a
great deal of press and media speculation as to the nature of the grounds of
review, the Commission has decided to provide a fuller news release than
normal. Accordingly, a brief summary of some of the Commission’s main
findings in the case is given below.
As the full statement of reasons extends to over 800 pages and is
accompanied by a further thirteen volumes of appendices it is not possible to
reflect the detail or complexity of the issues that have been addressed by the
Commission. This news release is intended therefore merely to assist in an
understanding of the nature of the Commission’s main investigations and
findings and does not form part of its decision in the case.
Announcing the decision today, the Chairman of the Commission the Very
Rev. Dr Graham Forbes CBE said: - “The Commission has a very special
role within the Scottish Criminal Justice system, and has been given extensive
statutory powers to enable it to carry out this role. The function of the
Commission is not to decide upon the guilt or innocence of an applicant. We
are neither pro-Crown nor pro-defence. Our role is to examine the grounds of
review identified, either by the applicant, a third party or by our own
investigations, and to decide whether any of the grounds meet our statutory
test. I am satisfied that the Commission has vigorously and independently
scrutinised the many grounds of review in this particular application, and has
now produced a lengthy and detailed statement of reasons which I believe
comprehensively deals with all of the issues raised.”
2
Provost Forbes continued:- “It would have been impossible for us to have
completed our investigation without the cooperation of other public and
government bodies both at home and abroad, and we readily acknowledge
this help. I would emphasise however that neither Scottish Ministers nor the
Scottish Executive Justice Department, nor for that matter any other official
body, has at any time sought to influence or interfere in the Commission’s
investigations; and all requests for appropriate grant aid to enable a full and
comprehensive investigation and review have been properly met, without
question.
This has been a difficult case to deal with. The Commission’s enquiry team
have worked tirelessly for over three years. Some of what we have discovered
may imply innocence; some of what we have discovered may imply guilt.
However, such matters are for a court to decide. The Commission is of the
view, based upon our lengthy investigations, the new evidence we have found
and other evidence which was not before the trial court that the applicant may
have suffered a miscarriage of justice. The place for that matter to be
determined is in the appeal court, to which we now refer the case.”
Gerard Sinclair, the Chief Executive of the Commission said today: - “This
has clearly been a unique case for the Commission in many ways, not least,
in terms of the universal press and media interest. It has certainly been the
longest, the most expensive and singularly most complex case we have had
to investigate and review. I am pleased that after a full and thorough
investigation we are now able to produce our statement of reasons. It has
been difficult at times to ignore, and to refrain from commenting upon, the
almost constant speculation regarding this review, much of which I have to
say has been either inaccurate or simply incorrect. I hope however that the
comprehensive statement of reasons which the Commission has now
produced for the parties will answer the many questions which have been
raised over the last 3 years. The Commission’s involvement in the case is
now at an end. It is a matter entirely for those representing the Crown and the
defence at any future appeal to decide whether they wish to rely upon the
conclusions reached by the Commission, or develop arguments of their own.
Thereafter, it will be for the appeal court to decide whether there has been a
miscarriage of justice in this case.”
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