Monday, 27 July 2009

The waiting game

[This is the headline over my column in the July issue of the Scottish lawyers' magazine The Firm. It reads as follows:]

It took three years for the SCCRC to conclude that Abdelbaset Ali Mohmad al- Megrahi may be the victim of a miscarriage of justice, and a further two years will have passed before his appeal is heard, by which time he may have died. Professor Robert Black QC calls on the Scottish authorities to show some courage before it is too late.

Abdelbaset al-Megrahi should never have been convicted for the Lockerbie atrocity. His conviction, on the evidence led at the trial, was nothing short of astonishing. It constitutes the worst miscarriage of justice perpetrated by a Scottish criminal court since the conviction of Oscar Slater in 1909.

It should never be forgotten that one crucial ground on which the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission held that there might have been a miscarriage of justice in Megrahi’s case, was its view that no reasonable court could have reached the conclusion that the trial court did, on a matter absolutely central to its reasons for convicting.

The delay in bringing Megrahi’s current appeal to the hearing stage has been scandalous. Had a modicum of urgency been shown, it is entirely conceivable that the appeal could have been over before now and the appellant back with his wife and children in his own country, a free man. The SCCRC had his case under consideration for more than three years before referring it back to the High Court. But the issue of the trial court’s unreasonable findings is a very simple and straightforward one and required virtually no investigation other that a perusal of the relevant portions of the transcript of evidence. If the SCCRC decided early in its deliberations that the case was going to have to be referred back on this ground – and it is difficult to believe that it did not – then delaying taking that step for three years is hard to justify.

Then there is the delay that has occurred after the SCCRC referred the case to the High Court in June 2007, attributable in large part to the Fabian tactics of the Crown and the spurious public interest immunity claims of the UK Foreign Office. Two whole years have passed since the SCCRC reference. Eighteen months have passed since the appellant’s full written grounds of appeal were lodged with the court. And it was only at the end of April 2009 that the first tranche of the appeal was heard. On the leisurely timetable that the appeal court has set, it would require a minor miracle for the proceedings to be concluded by the twenty-first anniversary of the disaster in December 2009.

What makes all of this worse is that the appellant was diagnosed in October 2008 with terminal, late-stage prostate cancer. His condition has recently deteriorated to such an extent that he was unable to attend court for the first tranche of the appeal or, indeed, comfortably to follow the proceedings over the TV link that had been set up.

The recently lodged prisoner transfer application would enable him to return to Libya to spend his remaining weeks with his wife, children, aged mother and siblings, which is – understandably – now his overriding priority. But, for prisoner transfer to be granted by the Scottish Government, Megrahi would have to abandon his appeal. This, clearly, would bring joy to the hearts of the Crown Office and the Scottish Government Justice Department. The manifold concerns over the Lockerbie conviction could be gleefully swept under the carpet and the pretence maintained that the system had worked perfectly and a guilty man had been justly convicted.

However, there is another course of action open to the Scottish Government, if Ministers have the strength of will and character to withstand the pressure of civil servants assiduously punting the prisoner transfer option. That course of action is compassionate release. This would enable Megrahi to be freed on licence and return to Libya. His appeal would run to its natural conclusion. If he died before the appeal court reached its decision, the appeal could be transferred to his executor or any person having a legitimate interest.

The Scottish public interest demands nothing less than that the concerns over Megrahi’s conviction be ventilated fully in court. Compassionate release provides the only mechanism whereby this can be achieved alongside the humanitarian goal of allowing him to die at home. Have Scottish Ministers the wisdom and the courage to embrace it?



    Since 2003 MEBO Ltd. at Switzerland had delivered to the SCCR Commission, proofs free of doubts,

    1) that no BAG was transferred by Air Malta, flight KM-180 on PanAm 103A in Frankfurt;

    2) that the MST-13 timer fragment (PT-35B) did not descend from a MST-13 timer supplied to Libya, thus Libya and its Official Mr. Abdelbaset Al Megrahi have nothing to do with the Lockerbie-Tragedy!

    In this sense Scotland's top judge, Justice General Lord Arthur Hamilton, protects the two Scottish Criminal Officials of RARDE and known persons of the Scottish Police, responsible for counterfeiting and manipulation of evidences in the Lockerbie-Affair !

    Mr. Abdelbaset Al Megrahi is an political hostage and "Lockerbie victim no. 271"! He is suffering innocently since April 6th, 1999 until now: 325'211'600 painful seconds in Scottish prisons!

    Justice For Abdelbaset Al Megrahi and Libya. Freedom for Mr Megrahi immediately!

    More informations on web:
    (BABEL FISH computer translation german/english)

    by Edwin and Mahnaz Bollier, MEBO Ltd., Switzerland

  2. I don't for one minute believe the decision will be made by the Scottish ministers. The decision will be made by those who hold the real power in the UK, the Establishment/permanent unelected government.

    I believe that if the pressure for an inquiry is so strong, they may go for compassionate leave and let Megrahi win the appeal at the first tranche so most of the sensitive information isn't aired in public.

    What Megrahi has and is going through is an act of gross barbarism. No words can really express my disgust and utter contempt for those complicit in such evil.

  3. Dear Scottish Justiciary. What goes on is a barbarous cruelty!

    What has been done and is still done to Mr. Abdelbaset al Megrahi, an innocent and terminally ill man, by the Scottish Justice is very hard to bear. Lockerbie is the biggest fraud in the history of Scotland!

    Please watch now the full documentary film "Lockerbie revisited" by Regisseur Gideon Levy, shown to Scottish members of Parliament about important facts concerning the conspiracy against Libya.

    The main subject dealt with the notorious 'timer circuit board MST-13 fragment', called PT35B in the court records. FBI Task Force Chief Richard Marquise answered Gideon Levy's question G. L.: Would you have a case if you wouldn't have these evidence (MST-13 timer)? R.M.: Would we have a case. It would be a very dificult case to prove. It would be a very dificult case to prove ... I don't think we would ever had an indictment. And he said also: But I can tell you that now money was paid to any witness, any witness prior to the trial. No promise of money was made to any witness prior to the trial. G.L.: And was there paid any money after he trial? R.M.: I'm not gonna answer that.
    And he said: If someone manipulated evidence, if somebody didn't invesitgate something that should have been investigated, if somebody twisted it to fit up up Megrahi, or Fimah or Libya, then that person will go to jail. I mean that sincerely, that person should be prosecuted for that.

    Former Lord Advocate Lord Fraser UK; Detective Constable of Strathclyde Police Thomas Gilchrist UK; Ex forensic scientist Dr. Thomas Hayes (RARDE), Ex forensic expert Allen Feraday (RARDE) UK; Ex FBI laboratory official Tom Thurman USA; former FBI Spezial Agent and Task Force Chief Richard Marquise USA, Detective Chief Superintendent Stuart Henderson, and others should all be ashamed for their criminal and parasitic cover up of the Lockerbie tragedy.

    by Edwin Bollier, MEBO Ltd

  4. Ebol,
    You forgot to mention the judges whose decision was nothing short of astonishing.

    Everything appears to have been synchronised to take away individual responsibility for an evil act.

  5. Not satisfied with fitting the man up they continue his torture.

  6. Right! All persons, including Experts, police, Officials and Judges, who finally were involved at the wrong judgement of Mr. Abdelbaset Al Megrahi, are also responsible for its deadly illness and must count with criminal sanctions!

    by Edwin Bollier


    Proclamation to all judges in the Lockerbie case: Sometimes in the life one must admit color and prove backbone: Justice for Mr. Megrahi and a complaint against their own Scottish Officials, for criminal manipulation of evidences in a particularly heavy case!

    Mr Abdelbaset Al Megrahi and its homeland Libya not have to do anything with the Lockerbie tragedy!

    Leader of Libya and Chairperson of African Union (AU)
    Mu'ammar al-Gaddhafi, has been invited to address the United Nations General Assembly on September 23, '09 in NewYork.

    It is time when Leader al Gaddhafi can say in his speech at the UN: the Lockerbie-Appeal to favor of his officials Mr. Abdelbaset Al Megrahi and Libya's, is thanks to the Scottish justice after 20 years, terminated! Mr. Megrahi's name is clean.

    (computer translation Babylon german/english)

    by Edwin and Mahnaz Bollier, MEBO Ltd. Switzerland

  8. I have to admit that Mr Bollier - despite his fractured and very annoying English - is perfectly correct in what he says: the "Brotherly Leader and Guide of the Revolution", Muammar Gaddafi, is scheduled to make an historic address to the UN General Assembly on 23 September 2009.

    In his speech, Col. Gaddafi is expected to refer directly to Pan Am Flight 103, and to call for a United Nations Inquiry into the death of UN Commissioner for Namibia, Bernt Carlsson, in the 1988 Lockerbie bombing.

    We all know that the Libyan Abdelbaset Megrahi didn't do it. We all know that Iran had a strong motive for downing an American aircraft (not PA 103 specifically) in retaliation for the shoot down of Iran Air Flight 655. But how many of us know about apartheid South Africa's intricate connection to Lockerbie?

    This website discusses the South Africa issue ( in relation to this book: James Sanders. "Apartheid’s Friends: The Rise and Fall of South Africa’s Secret Service" (London: John Murray, 2006), p.467n48. Here is an extract:

    "One of the more startling conspiracy theories involving apartheid South Africa concerns the Lockerbie bombing. The UN Commissioner for Namibia, Bernt Carlsson, died in the crash of Pan Am 103 on 21 December 1988. If he had survived, Carlsson would have supervised the independence of Namibia. Incredibly, Pik Botha, Magnus Malan, the CSI of MID Admiral Van Tonder and twenty other South African officials were also booked on Pan Am 103. They were travelling to New York for the final signing ceremony of the agreements relating to the Angolan-Namibian peace process. Botha and his team arrived early in London on an SAA flight which 'inexplicably cut out the scheduled Frankfurt stopover'. Botha and five members of his team were hastily booked on the morning Pan Am 101 flight; the remaining seventeen South African delegates did not use their tickets on Pan Am 103 but returned to South Africa. (Patrick Haseldine , Lockerbie Trial: A Better Defence of Incrimination - see, and

    "The Swedish newspaper iDAG, 12 March 1990, ( reported that Carlsson had been due to return to New York on 20 December but was 'persuaded' to visit De Beers in London and therefore was forced to take Pan Am 103 in order to be present at the signing ceremony.

    "A Reuters news report, 12 November 1994, (, confirmed that the South African party had been booked on Pan Am 103, as did South African Minister of Justice Dullah Omar when he was asked in the South African parliament on 12 June 1996 whether Pik Botha and his entourage had 'had any plans to travel on [Pan Am 103]'. The second parliamentary question: 'Whether the South African intelligence service had any reason to be concerned about or was aware of concerns expressed by the intelligence services of the [USA] or the [UK] of the threat of a possible terrorist attack on Pan Am 103?', drew a 'curiously equivocal' response from the Minister: 'As far as I could ascertain, the answer to both those questions is no' (Private Eye, 2 April 1999).

    "On Patrick Haseldine, the Foreign Office diplomat who was dismissed after writing a letter to the Guardian in which he criticised Mrs Thatcher for operating a 'double standard' on South African state terrorism, see the Guardian 7 December 1988, ( 17 December 1988, ( and 3 August 1989 (Guardian Editorial: Just out of court; David Pallister: FO to dismiss official in Pretoria row)."

    Let us hope that the Libyan leader's call for a United Nations Inquiry is heeded and that, as a result, the truth about who was responsible for the Lockerbie bombing can finally be determined.

  9. I would be interested to know if flight PA101 was full. This would seem to be a matter of crucial importance to Mr Haseldine's theory. Does anybody know?


    For the Big Finale, MEBO Ltd. is coming on Blocs: LOCKERBIE AFFAIR. (in work)
    by Edwin and Mahnaz Bollier, MEBO Ltd., Switzerland

  11. to baz: some people with tickets didn't board PA103, (John Lydon/Rotten), while others obtained their seat only the day before the flight (Jim Swire's daughter.)

    Wikipedia say, "Despite the usually busy Christmas period the Boeing 747 jumbo jet was only 2/3rds full."