Private Eye logo
twitter
twitter
rss
rss
rss
gnitty
in the back
From the Eye archives
Lockerbie Latest
Issue 1245, 15th September 2009
megrahi.jpg
Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi
The break-in at Heathrow
It was supposedly a Scottish prosecution, but two US prosecutors sat alongside the prosecution team and appeared to Dr Kochler to be “supervisors” influencing what was released into open court and what was kept secret. Said Dr Kochler: "It was a consistent pattern during the whole trial. As an apparent result of political interest considerations, efforts were undertaken to withhold substantial information from the court.”

More evidence has since emerged – such as a break-in at Heathrow near the Pan Am bay shortly before the flight took off, which was concealed from the trial. This might have explained evidence that was given at the trial by a baggage handler who said he saw that an extra Samsonite briefcase (like the one experts said contained the bomb) had been placed on top of a baggage container destined for the flight while he had left it unattended when he went for his tea.

Governments are still influencing the case
Further evidence, which the Scottish criminal cases review commission (SCCRC) has seen, and which formed one of the six grounds that it cited pointing to the fact that the wrong man had been convicted, remains secret. Even now, 20 years down the line, the government is still claiming public interest immunity on evidence that the SCCRC said should never have been withheld.

With Megrahi’s agreement to drop his appeal and his resulting release, it is clear that governments are still influencing the case. If Britain’s new best friend, Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi, and his government have been welcoming Megrahi back in a way that seems to have offended so many commentators, it is because they owe him. He was a step in their country’s rehabilitation with the west.

As the Eye has said ever since we predicted that the appeal would not be heard, it suits none of the administrations – the US, the UK or Libya – to have the case reopened. The forthcoming release of the papers by Tony Kelly, Megrahi’s Glasgow-based solicitor, should prove that the Libyan was not responsible for the atrocity in the skies over Lockerbie. The papers will not prove, however, who was responsible, nor why the chance to bring the real bombers to justice was so evidently botched – or, worse, deliberately sabotaged. That is what the politicians should really be shouting about.

More top stories in the latest issue:

DEEPCUT INQUESTS
New hope at last for the bereaved families of four army recruits who died of gunshot wounds in suspicious circumstances at Deepcut barracks in Surrey.

EY JELLY
Beancounters from EY are exposed in court for the pisspoor way they treated a Plymouth couple whose business they had put into administration.

DISORDERLY KEW
Why pruning more plant scientists from the payroll at Kew Gardens, which has a £5m shortfall, could be a false economy all round.

CRYOGENIC SHAME
Staff cuts at the Natural History Museum mean its nearly new cryogenic archive of genetic resources is now practically in mothballs.

BRIDGEND BLIGHT
More claims of negligent care – this time concerning a woman in labour – at the Princess of Wales hospital in Bridgend run by the ABMU health board.

MUST CHAI HARDER…
Chai Patel’s call for higher wages in care homes rings hollow given what his own company pays as he and fellow bosses await a £30m windfall.

CAPITAL PUNISHMENT
Why two Met Police officers could face perjury and perverting the course of justice charges over the death in custody of musician Sean Rigg.

private eye issue 1364
To read more from issue 1245 you can order a copy from our archive of back issues here.
gnitty
More From This Issue
Top Stories
Street Of Shame
more »
Top Stories
HP Sauce
Latest stories
more »
HP Sauce
Lookalikes
Are they related?
more »
Lookalikes
Also Available Online
More From This Issue
Private Eye Issue 1364
private eye Only In The Magazine

‘I Wasn’t Groped in Commons’ – Researcher’s Dramatic Claim… New From Gnome: The ‘Potty About George’ Potty… ‘Mission Accomplished’ Says Grand Old Duke of York in Helmand… That All-Purpose Housing Crisis Piece in Full… Russia ‘Sends in Peacekeepers’… Smug Alert Provoked by Number 11 Downing Street… Arianna Huffington: Six Steps to Finding Inner Happiness and Marketing It, as told to Craig Brown

And also...

- NHS smear test: M.D. on the cover-ups that go right to the top.
- Censor sensitivity: How Cambridge University Press caved in to Putin.
- Deepcut inquests: New hope at last for the bereaved families of four army recruits
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: 29th April 2014.

Private Eye Issue 1363
gnitty