Wednesday, 8 February 2012

SCCRC disclosure Bill hearing

Media accounts of yesterday's appearance by Justice for Megrahi representatives before the Scottish Parliament Justice Committee can be found here in The Scotsman; here in The Courier (a newspaper with a wide circulation in Tayside and Fife); here from The Press Association news agency; and here (with a video of the proceedings) on the BBC Open Democracy website.


  1. David McLetchie is probably against SCCRC disclosure?

    This is why he made the effective political point, about Megrahi's alleged refusal to disclose all the information held by him.

    Effective because it does seem odd, if someone out to prove their innocence withholds information.

    It was a diversion, because the committee was discussing SCCRC disclosure, but the JfM campaign needs to rebut him.

    It would look far better if Megrahi put no restriction on the release of his information.

    This is why I suspect that it was not Megrahi's decision, but his defence team's decision, who knew it would be used to obstruct non-disclosure by others?

  2. Dave, the following was posted on this blog on 4 July 2010 (

    It has recently been wrongly reported, that Mr Al-Megrahi refused to give his consent for the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission to release documents relating to him, referred to in the Commission’s Statement of Reasons on his case, and its appendices, that he and his lawyers provided, either directly or indirectly, to the Commission.

    The true position is that Mr Al Megrahi, through his Libyan lawyer, made it clear to the Commission in a meeting on April 12th 2010 that he was happy for the documents to be released, providing all the official bodies that provided documents to the Commission agreed to the release of all of those documents. These bodies include the police, the Crown Office, the Foreign Office, and the intelligence service, or services, which provided the secret documents referred to in Chapter 25 sources of the Statement of Reasons.

    Mr Al Megrahi’s position has always been, and remains, that all information relating to the case should be made public.

    [The above is the text of a statement dated 30 June 2010 issued to the Press Association news agency on behalf of Mr Megrahi by his Libyan lawyer, Mr Hamdi Fanoush, to whom I express my thanks for sending me a copy.]

  3. * Robert Black

    Yes, I recall that press release and thinking it odd at the time.

    This is because although the press release says, Megrahi wants all the information released.

    It added, the release of Megrahi's information was conditional on the release of all other information!

    Robert Forrester did say this in reply to McLetchie, but McLetchie's point was, why would someone out to prove their innocence restrict disclosure?

    It may seem a moot point, because if an enquiry is held, presumably all evidence would be disclosed.

    But politically, McLethie's point is to impress the public with the idea that Megrahi has something to hide.

    And he will probably use it as an excuse to oppose SCCRC disclosure.

    Megrahi's defence team at Zeist, failed to ask some elementary questions and making the release of his information conditional is poor advice and bad PR.

    These failures may be due to incompetence, or worse?