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 Raymond Gilmore

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Number of posts : 399
Location : Glasgow
Registration date : 2008-09-03

PostSubject: Raymond Gilmore   Wed Sep 03, 2008 3:59 pm

Fresh evidence quashes conviction after 20 years in prison for murder

A MAN who spent more than 20 years in jail for the rape and murder of a schoolgirl had his conviction overturned yesterday.
Raymond Gilmour was jailed for life after being convicted in 1982 of strangling 16-year-old Pamela Hastie. Gilmour, 45, claimed he made a false confession under pressure from the police and had always maintained his innocence.
At the Court of Appeal in Edinburgh yesterday, three judges granted his appeal. Lord Gill, Lord Abernethy and Lady Paton agreed Gilmour's conviction and sentence should be quashed.
Lord Gill said the appeal was being granted on the basis of fresh evidence.
Despite that, Gilmour was not freed from prison as he is serving another jail sentence. He was released from jail pending his appeal in 2002, but since then he has been imprisoned for indecent exposure.
Outside the court his mother, Christina Gilmour, said the family's long wait for justice was now over.
Mrs Gilmour, 76, said: "It's been a long, long wait but we've got what we asked for. It's been very, very tough for all these years, but I've always believed he was innocent. I've never had any doubts."
Miss Hastie was killed in November 1981 in the Rannoch Woods near to her home in Johnstone, Renfrewshire, where her partially clothed body was later found.
In June 1982 a jury at the High Court in Glasgow convicted 19-year-old Gilmour by a majority of eight to six.
Gilmour, from Paisley, confessed twice, but later claimed he was forced into making the admissions.
At a court hearing last year, Professor Gisli Gudjonsson, professor in forensic psychology at London's King's College, said he was in no doubt it was unsafe to rely on Gilmour's confessions.
Lord Gill concluded this was "important and significant" evidence in the case.
There was also fresh evidence regarding the significance of cuts found on Miss Hastie's fingers, which came from two experts in forensic medicine, Professor Anthony Busuttil and Professor Peter Vanezis.
The Crown pathologist had not commented on these wounds in the post-mortem report. However, the two professors said these were defensive injuries, consistent with the schoolgirl being attacked with a sharp instrument such as a knife.
Regarding the evidence of Prof Gudjonsson, Prof Busuttil and Prof Vanezis, he said: "I conclude that the evidence of these witnesses is of such significance that a verdict returned in ignorance of it must be regarded as a miscarriage of justice."
Lord Gill also highlighted what he termed as being a number of "outstanding areas of weakness" in the original Crown case in his judgment.
Miss Hastie was strangled with a length of twine that was wrapped round her neck three times, but no fibres from this were found on Gilmour's clothes.
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