Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Responses to Petitions Committee's queries

At its meeting on 25 January 2011, the Scottish Parliament's Public Petitions Committee agreed to write to the Scottish Government, the Crown Office and the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission with queries arising out of the Scottish Government's earlier response to the Justice for Megrahi petition and the petitioners' comments thereon. The answers from these bodies have been received by the committee and can be read here. At the invitation of the committee, the petitioners have prepared a written response to these answers. These documents will be considered by the committee at its meeting on 1 March.


  1. In her letter of 9 February 2011 to the PPC, the Lord Advocate Elish Angiolini writes:

    The only appropriate forum for the determination of guilt or innocence is the criminal court and the High Court of Justiciary sitting as the Court of Criminal Appeal is the only body with the power (as set out in the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995) to quash this conviction. The Supreme Court has this power also on consideration of a devolution issue. Mr al-Megrahi was convicted unanimously by three senior judges following trial and his conviction was upheld unanimously by five judges in the Appeal Court presided over by the Lord Justice General, Scotland's most senior judge.

    Yes, that's all perfectly true.

    But none of those judges knew about the Gauci brothers being bribed $3m to secure Mr al-Megrahi's conviction.

    In view of which, why doesn't the Lord Advocate Elish Angiolini immediately apply to the High Court of Justiciary to have al-Megrahi's conviction quashed?

  2. Dear Commentators,

    All documents (including the JFM petitioners' response to the Lord Advocate, the Justice Secretary and the SCCRC) are available on the parliamentary website:

    Robert Forrester (Sec, JFM).