Tuesday 20 October 2009

Key Lockerbie evidence "unsafe" claims MSP

[What follows is the text of a press release and note to editors from Christine Grahame MSP.]

Scottish police investigators did not make the key piece of evidential material used to convict Abdelbaset al Megrahi, the man convicted of the Lockerbie bombing, secure an SNP MSP has claimed. Christine Grahame MSP has said the Crown Office has now confirmed to her that the fragment was taken to Germany and then to the US by Scottish investigating officers without the knowledge of the Defence team and more crucially the then Lord Advocate, Lord Fraser of [Carmyllie], the senior prosecutor at the time of the investigation.

In an interview for Dutch TV yet to be shown on UK television Lord Fraser was asked if the fragment, known as PT-35 (alleged to be part of the bomb’s timer) had always remained in the UK. Lord Fraser responded:

“As far as I’m aware it’s always been in the UK.”

Asked if it had ever been to the United States, Lord Fraser responds:

“Not that I’m aware of,” adding that he would have known if it had left the UK, telling Dutch reporters: “What would have gone through my mind is, I’m not accusing the FBI or anything… [but] could this evidence get lost, or damaged or tampered with? No, no I would want to keep everything so that there can be no accusations at a trial that in some way [the fragment] has been fiddled with.”

Now SNP MSP Christine Grahame has confirmed that the same fragment also went to Germany two months before being sent across the Atlantic to Washington without, it seems, the knowledge of the Lord Advocate and the Crown Office. Ms Grahame herself a former lawyer, also claims Scottish police investigators did not record the fragment’s transportation across the world and in doing so broke the vital chain of evidence undermining the integrity of the fragment. She said:

“The Crown Office have confirmed to me that the fragment, PT-35, the piece of evidence that it was claimed by prosecutors linked Libya to the attack was also sent to Germany in April 1990 as well as the US.

“On the 22nd of June 1990 it was then taken to the FBI lab in Washington for examination by FBI officials there. Lord Fraser makes it clear he did not know and would not have allowed this evidence to be taken out of Scottish jurisdiction and control, but that is precisely what did happen. That leaves a very serious question mark over the central piece of evidence used to convict Mr Megrahi."

The senior Scottish police investigator involved in the case, retired Detective Chief Superintendent Stuart Henderson told Dutch journalists last December,

“We couldn’t afford to let something like that go. It has never been in their [US] control at all. It couldn’t be, because it was such an important point of evidence it wasn’t possible to release it. It had to be contained to be produced at the court therefore you couldn’t afford to have it waved around for everyone to see it because it could have got interfered with.”

“But that is precisely what appears to have happened,” Ms Grahame said and separately confirmed she has seen additional documents yet to be made public that showed DCS Henderson had told Crown prosecution officials in a formal legal statement that the fragment had indeed been to the US. Ms Grahame added:

“I am not sure why DCS Henderson’s statements made separately to Dutch TV and to the Crown Office contradict each other so starkly. That is a matter for Mr Henderson to explain. Either this fragment was in the US or it was not.

“I am deeply concerned that during the investigation and indeed leading all the way up to the Trial that neither the Crown nor Megrahi’s Defence were ever made aware that this crucial piece of evidence was being ‘waved around for everyone to see’ as DCS Henderson put it.

“Questions also need to be answered about the associated evidence log that was meant to accompany PT-35. It mysteriously does not record that the fragment went to the US or Germany, even though the Crown Office has confirmed in writing that it definitely went to Germany."

Note to editors:

The Crown Office responding to a Freedom of Information request from Ms Grahame stated:
“PT 35 was taken to the Siemens company in Munich, Germany in April 1990 by Scottish police officers.”

Now retired FBI Senior Investigating Officer Richard Marquise confirmed to Ms Grahame’s office last week that, “PT-35, the actual fragment, came to the US one time, in June 1990 in the possession of a Scottish police officer and Feraday (Alan Feraday of the UK forensic explosives laboratory, RARDE).”

DCS Henderson, the Senior Scottish Police Investigator in an interview with Dutch documentary makers VPRO stated: “[the fragment] was in his (Alan Feraday, RARDE) possession and my possession but it was never released for anybody to hold it… they (the FBI) came to where we had it to see it because it wasn’t possible to remove any evidence out of the jurisdiction of the Scottish control.”

In his precognition statement given to Scottish Crown prosecutors DCS Henderson confirms that on the 22nd of June 1990 Henderson, accompanied by Chief Inspector McLean, DI Williamson and Alan Feraday from RARDE took the fragment to the US and “Met in Washington with metropolitan field officers of the FBI and Thomas Thurman.” The FBI’s Thomas Thurman was the officer who later claimed to have identified the fragment and the link to Libya, but later retired from the FBI following accusations by colleagues that he had [altered] forensic reports related to other criminal murder investigations.

[A report on the issue on the BBC News website can be read here. A radio interview with Christine Grahame can be heard here.

What follows is the text of a Crown Office press release:

"There is absolutely nothing new in this misleading story. Contrary to what is being claimed by Ms Grahame, the fact that the fragment of MST-13 timer known as PT 35 was taken to West Germany in 1990 by Scottish police officers was known to Mr Megrahi's defence team prior to his trial and indeed was presented to the Court by the Crown as evidence in the trial. During the trial Hans Brosamle of Siemens was called as a Crown witness and described examining PT 35 in Munich to the Court. Mr Megrahi's defence team did not dispute during the trial, after analysis by their own experts, that the fragment was part of an MST-13 timer.

"At no time during the investigation was the timer fragment ever outside the custody and control of the Scottish police officers, or forensic scientists at the Royal Armament Research and Development Establishment (RARDE)."

It will be noticed that this response does not address (a) the issue of the transfer of the fragment to the United States; (b) the issue of the then Lord Advocate's ignorance of the movement of the fragment out of the UK; and (c) his reasons for stating that no such movements should have occurred. Nor does it explain why the "chain of custody" label attached to the fragment appears not to record these movements.]


  1. It seems to me that the Crown Office is deliberately confusing this issue of printed circuit board fragments. Was Christine Grahame specifically told that the timer fragment (PT-35) was taken to Siemens in Germany? Or did the Fort Halstead forensic laboratory head, Alan Feraday, take another PCB fragment from a radio cassette recorder for identification purposes? In any event, Christine Grahame is to be congratulated for putting former Senior Investigating Officer, DCS Stuart Henderson, on the spot. Henderson clearly has some serious questions to answer.

    I recall that the VPRO documentary Lockerbie Revisited concludes with author and journalist Ian Ferguson saying: "This could bring an end to the appeal. If the Crown knew that this was all going to be heard in public, they may well drop their opposition to the appeal and Megrahi goes free. That's how f*****g important it is. This could bring the Scottish judicial system and the FBI into f*****g complete disrepute, and frankly they would not want this linen to be washed in public!" ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VPRO_Backlight#Lockerbie_revisited )

    Thus, Mr Megrahi's appeal had to be dropped....


    In the documentary film "Lockerbie revisited" the wrong picture for the MST-13 timer fragment (PT-35) was shown. The fragment on the finger was prod. AG-145, the Toshiba radio-recorders fragment.

    Actions of Strathclyde police Inspector Keith Harrower, witness No. 261 in Kamp van Zeist concerning his examination of the first brown MST-13 timer fragment:

    On the 27th of April 1990 Harrower visited the company Siemens AG in Munich, Germany. There he meet with electronic Eng. Brosante; who examined the first "brown" MST-13 Timer-Fragment.
    Eng. Brosante saw the fragment into two parts. Afterwards it was clear for him that the first circuit board was fabricated out of a standard manufactured 8 layers fiberglass PC-board.
    NB: The green machine made MST-13 timers delivered to Libya consisted of PC-boards with 9 layers of fiberglass.

    Witness number 261, Inspector Keith Harrower, Court at Kamp van Zeist. (day 7, of June, 2000)

    Q-- Are you Keith Harrower? A-- I am, sir, yes. Q-- Are you an inspector with the Strathclyde police, based at Kirkintillock? A--As a consequence, did you then go to Germany? A-- I did so, yes. Q-- and did you go to a company by the name of Siemens AG? A-- Yes, sir. Q-- There did you meet a gentleman, Herr Brosante? A-- I did, sir, yes.

    Q-- And did Mr. or Herr Brosante have a request to make of you? A-- He did, yes.
    Q-- Was that to remove annother fragment-- or annother sample, rather--from the fragment? Q-- Would you look for me, please, at Label 419. Do you recognise that, Inspector? A-- Yes. Q-- As being? A-- That's a sample that was removed in Munich, at Siemens. Q-- and can you tell the date? A-- Yes, sir, the 27th of April 1990. Q- Thank you.

    After his visit to Siemens AG, Keith Harrower went back to Scotland and was from May 1990 on deliberately replaced by a new police officer, Det. Michael Langford-Johnson based in Glasgow. Without his knowing of already done examinations Det. Michael Langford-Johnson was ordered by Inspector William Williamson to continue fraudulent manipulations concerning the "MST-13 fragment.

    MEBO comment: To keep secret the change from a brown to a green MST-13 fragment the continuity of the examinations from Keith Harrower to Inspector Michael Langford Johnson was thus interrupted!

    by Edwin and Mahnaz Bollier, MEBO Ltd. Switzerland

  3. MISSION LOCKERBIE: The Crown is not correct !

    Crown denies Lockerbie evidence claims (The INDEPENDENT):
    Claims by an MSP that police investigating the Lockerbie bombing failed to keep secure a key piece of evidence were denied by Crown officials today. It said the fact that fragment had been taken to Germany was known to the defence team at the trial and it was not disputed by the defence that the fragment was part of a particular type of timer.
    "At no time during the
    investigation was the timer fragment ever outside the custody and control of the Scottish police officers, or forensic scientists at the Royal Armament and Research Establishment," it said.

    MEBO say: The Solicitors at that time was unable to be seen something in context !
    One can bind a thousand law books on the back of a donkey nevertheless it remains a donkey

    Excerpts from the Court-documents at Kamp van Zeist (17th of June, 2000)
    Witness Michael Langford-Johnson, no. 118, sworn statements:

    Q- Are you Detective Inspector Michael Langford-Johnson? A- I am, sir.
    ---- Q- Inspector, did you become involved in the inquiry in relation to the Lockerbie disaster? A- I was, yes. Q- And in May of 1990, did you assist in a particular line of inquiry along with Detective Inspector Williamson? A- I did. Q- Was that into the manufacture of a small fragment of printed circuit board? A- Yes, identified as PT/35.

    Q- Thank you. And did you. And did you understand that Inspector Williamson had been conducting these inquiris for some months prior to you joining him? A- I was aware of that, yes. Q- Had he been assisted up until then by another officer, Mr. Harrower? A- I belive so, yes.

    Q- Could you have before you, please, Label Number 353 and Label Number 419. Now, is Label 353, Inspector, the fragment of the printed circuit board referred to by you as PT/35? A- Yes. And it bears my signature on it as well. Q- Thank you. Now, is Label Number 419 apparently a sample removed from that fragment? A- It is. And it bears my signature on the label again, sir. Q- Had that sample already been removed by the time you began assisting Inspector Williamson? A- It had, yes. Q- Thank you.

    Q- 419. That's the sample removed from the original fragment known as PT--. A- Correct, giving the number DP/31.--------
    Q- All right. Do you remember what color the fragment of printed circuit board itself was? A- I can't remember.

    MEBO say: Its clear Label no. 419, was the second part DP/31 from
    PT-35, that was removed from Mr. Brosante in Munich, at Siemens on 27th of April 1990.

    by Edwin and Mahnaz Bollier, MEBO Ltd., Switzerland

  4. Mr Megrahi's appeal had to be dropped at all costs. The 'all costs' is not yet in the public domain.

  5. MISSION LOCKERBIE: Do not forget:

    FBI Task Force chief Richard Marquise said... on 29 September, 2009 on this bloc:

    5. - that E Bollier says he had been shown another fragment earlier, and that the "latest version" was altered since then.

    R-- I do not think Mr. Bollier ever saw the real fragment--just pictures--at any rate from his current post he wants to show how "strong" his timers were as they survived an explosion and fall from a plane. His words--not mine.

    6. - that contradicting statements have been made, whether the timer fragment was in USA or not, raising doubt about why it would have been.

    R--no contradictory statement. If you will see the entire information in the Levy "documentary" he notes that I promised him I would not lie, did not and confirmed in an email, that the fragment had indeed come to the US. It did to confirm what the FBI had found-- a match--something police in the UK had been unable to do in six months. That is why it is important to work together and share information.

    ebol answer: on 29 September, 2009on this bloc:
    NB: This is only a Babylon computer translation, german/english:

    Mr. Marquise,
    why you know that I could never see the original whole MST-13 timer- fragment, police No. PT-35, with the in-scratched letter "M" on it ? That makes you very suspect and supports my determined proofs!
    Question: Mr. Marquise, where is the original part of PT-35 (b) with in-scratched letter "M" ? (see the FBI proof photo at trial Kamp van Zeist).

    Now the missing facts about evidence linking the bomb to Libya is clear !

    After the published controversial documentary film "Lockerbie Revisited" from Gideon Lewy and the statement of ex FBI specially agent and task Force chief Richard Marquise, suggests the MEBO MST-13 fragment (PT-35) left the UK and was examined in USA.
    A comment on Professor Robert Black bloc 'The Lockerbie Case'; Marquise say:,"I do not think Mr. Bollier ever saw the real fragment--just pictures"!

    A part material of the MST-13 fragment PT-35 (b) with the "M" on it, brown colored is still missing and could be today stay at FBI!
    The real material MST-13 timer fragment (PT-35) with the "M" on it was concoct from a non functional MST-13 prototype circuit board, and was on the 27th of April 1990, by officer Harrower, for forensic investigation, by Siemens company in Germany. After the visit by Siemens, Allen Feraday (RARDE) brought the two sawed material fragments PT-35(b) and DP-31(a) to the FBI expert Tom Thurman, in Washington. From this time, the real fragment PT-35(b) with the "M" on it, is MISSING !

    From 12th May 1990 the brown colored fragment PT-35(b) was re-placed with a green colored duplicate, without the "M" on it, and was used for conect Libya in the Lockerbie-tragedy ! Now only a FBI photo with the pictures of the real PT-35(b) exist !!!

    By the way, in the film "Lockerbie Revisited", confirmed Task Foce chief of UK , Stuart Henderson: " the MST-13 timer fragment never left UK"! Also a Lie!!!

    Please see evidences + pictures on our webpage: www.lockerbie.ch

    by Edwin Bollier, MEBO Ltd., Switzerland

  6. Where exactly did they take the planted fake timer fragment? Did someone tamper with that blue-tinted fiberglass fantasy of Libyan guilt?

    Tempest in a tea pot, but I guess a good tempest can kick up some good attention ... and confusion.