Private Eye logo
twitter
twitter
rss
rss
rss
rss
gnitty
hp sauce
From the Eye archives
Lockerbie Latest
Issue 1245, 15th September 2009
megrahi.jpg
Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi
POLITICIANS on both sides of the Atlantic who have been outraged at the release of the mass-murdering “Lockerbie bomber” should take time to read the many hundreds of pages of evidence and argument in the case, expected to be released by his lawyers over the next few weeks.

Even the most vociferous critic might be left in some doubt about the conviction of Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi, freed from a Scottish jail to die with his family in Libya, and suspect that the Libyan was the victim of the most dreadful miscarriage of justice.

The fact that the wrong man was in the dock was evident to those few independent observers who sat through the entire travesty of a trial in the Netherlands nearly 10 years ago. One of those was Dr Hans Kochler, appointed by the United Nations, who concluded: "There is not one single piece of material evidence linking [Megrahi] to the crime… the guilty verdict appears to be arbitrary, even irrational.”

Flawed and glaringly contradictory evidence
Kochler’s report was a damning indictment of the three Scottish trial judges who sat without a jury. The bulk of their judgment pointed to a not proven verdict – and then they convicted Megrahi anyway.

As Eye readers will know, there were alterations to crucial forensic exhibits supposedly linking Libya and Megrahi to the bomb, for which police and scientists could give no proper explanation; there was a succession of flawed and glaringly contradictory evidence from key witnesses, at least two of whom were paid by the CIA; there was evidence of the striking similarity to the modus operandi of a Syrian-backed Palestinian terrorist cell, operating out of Frankfurt, caught with devices equipped to bring down planes – one of which was missing. And then, of course, there was the crucial “identification” of Megrahi by Tony Gauci, the Maltese shopkeeper who sold the clothes identified as being packed in the suitcase with the bomb. In all his statements and evidence, Gauci only ever says that Megrahi bore a “resemblance” to the man who purchased the clothes – never that he was the man.

The judges performed a number of extraordinary leaps of logic to overcome these and all the other problems with the prosecution case, and it was evident to Dr Kochler even then that “foreign governments and secret governmental agencies”, directly or indirectly, influenced the trial.

More top stories in the latest issue:

HOYLE & TROUBLE
Why Lindsay Hoyle, Labour’s senior deputy speaker and chairman of ways and means, looks vulnerable if there is a hung parliament.

HOUSING NEWS
Despite past boasts and future promises, why neither Labour nor the coalition has anything to crow about on housebuilding.

STINK TANKS
How top Tories Michael Gove and Sajid Javid jetted off to the US to address a hush-hush conference of bankers, neocons and Republican hopefuls.

THOSE SIGNA-TORIES IN FULL…
The big business bosses with Tory ties who slipped under the radar when they wrote ‘indepenently’ to the Telegraph to support the ‘economic plan’.

COAKER DEPENDENCY
KPMG, late of the defence equipment ‘GoCo’ fiasco, lends Labour defence spokesman Vernon Coaker a free analyst to help him… avoid waste!


private eye issue 1390
To read more from issue 1245 you can order a copy from our archive of back issues here.
gnitty
More From This Issue
Mediaballs
All the latest gaffes
more »
Mediaballs
Strips
Premiershits
more »
Strips
A Message
from the New Coalition Academy
more »
A Message
Also Available Online
More From This Issue
Private Eye Issue 1390
private eye Only In The Magazine

US Invades Sussex: ‘It’s Not the Oil’, Claims President… Labour’s new threat to destroy Britain loses them election, says Daily Blackmail… ‘How I Fell in Love with Wallace,’ by Wendolene… The Joy of Economics: Ed Milband’s Guide to Labour Love-making… Businessmen Support Tories – Shock New Letter to the Torygraph… George Galloway: Me and My Spoon… Diary from the Office of Tony Blair, as told to Craig Brown

And also...

- Stink tanks: Michael Gove and Sajid Javid address a secret right-wing beano in the US
- That’s rich: BBC gives £15,000 to memorial service for multi-millionaire David Frost
- Sex, lies & ferrets: News of the World habits live on at the Sun on Sunday
For all these stories you can buy the magazine or subscribe here and get delivery direct to your home every fortnight.
Next issue on sale: 28th April 2015.

Private Eye Issue 1389
gnitty