Thursday, 5 June 2014

Application submitted to SCCRC for posthumous Megrahi appeal

This morning a press conference is taking place in Glasgow to announce that today an application is being submitted to the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission for review of the conviction of the late Abdelbaset al-Megrahi for the murder of the 270 people who died at Lockerbie in the Pan Am 103 disaster. Among those speaking at the conference are the Rev'd John Mosey, Dr Jim Swire (each of whom lost a daughter in the tragedy) and Aamer Anwar, the solicitor instructed by the applicants.

This is a highly significant development. But, as I have been at pains in the past to point out, there are major problems and pitfalls in the path of overturning the shameful conviction of Mr Megrahi. Nevertheless, it can be done -- and if the reputation of Scottish criminal justice is ever to be redeemed, it must be.


  1. My heart, my body and my soul goes out to all the appellants! You are heroic!I Almost feel that JFM ought to be reannointed as 'The 5th June Movement!'. We know how to play poker. Even if the judiciary attempt to boot this into the long grass courtesy of Sec7 Cadder, we have won! Because the matter will be taken out of the hands of Scotland. And that's a fact. If Salmond has any sense at all he should endorse an independent public inquiry immediately, sack Kenny and stop sharing his toothpaste with Mulhoodlum.

  2. Great news.
    Story now on BBC

    with the added bonus of a Frank Duggan quote

  3. Finally.

    >... the added bonus of a Frank Duggan quote.

    Yes, the usual song: Twist (the facts) and Shout.

    But he is right about one thing:

    "...there are people who simply will not let the case go away."

  4. No surprise that Duggan was given a platform. The article is, after all, written by Reevel Alderson, remember him? He's the one who thought it such a jolly wheeze to focus on Baset's sex life, presumably in an attempt to justify the Zeist conviction. Later, he went on to cover himself in yet more glory by accusing us of levelling a criminal allegation at Colin Boyd when we had done nothing of the sort, as would have been patently obvious to anyone who actually understood the English language. It is reassuring to know that 'Auntie' continues to maintain its incomparable journalistic standards.


  5. "It is reassuring to know that 'Auntie' continues to maintain its incomparable journalistic standards" ---- indeed Robert. They haven't covered themselves in glory on a number of stories they have covered recently. Newsnight springs to mind.
    A lot of journalists and many in officialdom are going to look rather foolish when the "official" Pan Am 103 narrative goes to the wall. You'd need to be wearing a pair of Crown Office spectacles to still be convinced by the current fairy story.

  6. The only time I can recall a JFM committee member ever being invited on to Newsnight was years ago, when the editor was convinced that our petition was going to be closed down earlier in the day. It wasn't. Thus they had to put up with their 'facts' on the Scottish Government's understanding of the law and its behaviour towards us being corrected for the duration of the interview.

  7. Sorry Robert, I was referring to the Newsnight/Lord McAlpine fiasco.


  8. No need to apologise, Scott. By saying "The only time I can recall a JFM committee member ever being invited on to Newsnight was years ago, etc" was not intended to question your statement in anyway, merely to enhance it by taking a swipe at the establishment slant ingrained in pretty much all that emanates from a body formally run by said establishment but which we pay the licence fee for. On this blogspot, I tend to be a bit of a monomaniac, I'm afraid.

    The McAlpine fiasco can probably be put down to sloppy journalism. That same standard of journalism cannot account for the parlous quality of the BBC's output. Once upon a time, Horizon was worth watching, unfortunately, I gave up being one of its viewers many moons ago due to its having become so superficial. Insofar as news current affairs programmes go, the organisation's main focus seems to be in maintaining the general public in a mushroom culture. This is evident in flaccid vox pop shows like Question Time (that are little more than party political adverts in disguise), the editorial choices made on whose opinions ought to be represented, and the treatment of contending voices on the likes of Newsnight: Kirsty Wark came across as having been a classic exponent of an anchor who seemed to fawn to establishment figures whilst pillorying those who took up opposing positions.

    Even in these above contexts though, things can backfire and one has to wonder just what 'Auntie' thinks she is playing at, such as with the number of times Farage, with a grand total of zero MPs at Westminster, has been invited to be on the Question Time panel in recent years.

    There is a fundamental right wing libertarian bias at the BBC and always has been. But it's all dreadfully balanced and nice, so that's okay then.

    If we pay for it, we should have the power to say who runs it.


  9. Many vilify the BBC for a left rather than right-wing bias and vice-versa and of course both are true, because depending on the issue the BBC promotes the establishment view [as represented by front bench opinion in Parliament].

    And when they don’t act as the state [establishment] broadcaster [e.g. over Iraq] the senior management is replaced.

    The solution to BBC bias is not removal of the license fee, but voting reform to ensure that front bench opinion in Parliament [and in turn BBC news] is more representative of public opinion.