Thursday, 1 November 2007

A prison visit

Today I had a two-hour meeting in Her Majesty's Prison Greenock with Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, at his invitation (my first). Since the date of the trial court's verdict against him, my position has been a clear one: on the evidence led at the trial his conviction was simply an outrageous miscarriage of justice, about which the Scottish criminal justice system should feel nothing but shame. As a result of today's meeting I am satisfied that not only was there a wrongful conviction, but the victim of it was an innocent man. Lawyers, and I hope others, will appreciate this distinction.

I will not be disclosing the content of my discussions with Mr Megrahi, but I can say that he now speaks English with a fine Scottish accent (his first words to me were "Thank you for visiting me on such a dreich day") and that his taste in mints is impeccable.

["dreich" in relation to weather means dreary, cheerless, bleak. See http://www.dsl.ac.uk/]

1 comment:

Patrick Haseldine said...

Dear Robert,

Congratulations on yesterday's first meeting with Mr al-Megrahi.

Congratulations also on another recent "first": your signature at the head of a growing list of signatories on the petition to PM Gordon Brown calling for a United Nations Inquiry into the death of UN Commissioner for Namibia, Bernt Carlsson, in the 1988 Lockerbie bombing.

At least 200 signatures are required by the 29 December 2007 closing date.

See http://petitions.pm.gov.uk/UNInquiry/

Yours sincerely,

Patrick Haseldine