He was the only man found guilty in 2001 of blowing up Pan Am flight 103, which killed two hundred and seventy people on the evening of December 21, 1988.
Over the fourteen years since his conviction, the case against him presented by advocates of the Scottish Crown Office has steadily fallen apart.
It is now known and scientifically proven that supposedly damning evidence against Megrahi relied on concealment by senior police officers of key facts supporting the defence case, and presentation of false scientific data by a senior British forensic scientist.
Long-time campaigner Dr Jim Swire, whose 23-year-old daughter Flora was killed in the bombing, yesterday said: “After I realised that he had nothing to do with the murder of my daughter, Megrahi became my friend. There are a lot of legal people in Scotland who want to see this issue properly resolved. I hope that the appeal will succeed and, when it does, Megrahi’s family will no longer be regarded as the family of the so-called Lockerbie bomber. ”
This will be the third time Megrahi’s conviction has been the subject of an appeal.
After he received his life sentence in 2001, Megrahi appealed but his appeal was unsuccessful.
A second appeal saw the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission (SCCRC) refer the case back to the Scottish High Court, suggesting that there “may have been a miscarriage of justice” and it was “in the interests of justice” to look at the case again.
But in 2009 Megrahi - by then suffering from terminal prostate cancer - abandoned his second appeal to improve his chances of being allowed to go home to Libya. He died on 20th May 2012.
Whenever in the past the prosecution evidence on which his conviction was based has been challenged by new information or scientific experiments, the Scottish Crown Office comment has been that these matters can be properly examined only in a court of law.
A third appeal means that they will be. It will give the Megrahi defence team an opportunity to present the new evidence, and cross-examine current and former police officers and forensic scientists.
The Sunday TimesReplyDelete
From The Sunday Times
August 16, 2009.......................................5 days before the Libyan was released.. 2 DIA agents were killed in the bombing
US blamed Iran for Lockerbie bomb
Jason Allardyce and Mark Macaskill
American intelligence documents blaming Iran for the Lockerbie bombing would have been produced in court if the Libyan convicted of Britain’s worst terrorist attack had not dropped his appeal.
Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi, a former Libyan intelligence officer expected to be freed this week, had instructed his lawyers to produce US Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) cables implicating the so-called “rogue state”.
The memo suggests Iran was behind the attack on Pan Am flight 103, which killed 270 people in 1988, in response to the shooting down of an Iranian commercial airliner by the USS Vincennes, an American warship, five months earlier.
One document the defence team had planned to produce was a memo from the DIA dated September 24, 1989. It states: “The bombing of the Pan Am flight was conceived, authorised and financed by Ali-Akbar Mohtashemi-Pur, Iran’s former interior minister.
“The execution of the operation was contracted to Ahmad [Jibril], Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine General Command (PFLP-GC) leader, for a sum of $1m (£600,700).
“$100,000 of this money was given to Jibril up front in Damascus by the Iranian ambassador to Sy [Syria], Muhammad Hussan [Akhari] for initial expenses. The remainder of the money was to be paid after successful completion of the mission.”
The document is included in an unpublished report by the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission, a public body which considers miscarriage of justice claims, and which in 2007 cast doubt on the safety of Megrahi’s conviction.
The report also cites a DIA briefing in December 1989 entitled “Pan Am 103, Deadly Co-operation” which named Iran as the likely state sponsor of the bombing.
The briefing stated that the PFLP-GC was “fast becoming an Iranian proxy” and that the destruction of Pan Am flight 103 to avenge the shooting down of the Iran Air 655 airbus may have been the result of such Iranian and PFLP-GC co-operation.
The DIA briefing discounted Libya’s involvement in the bombing on the basis that there was “no current credible intelligence” implicating her. It stated: “Following a brief increase in anti-US terrorist attacks after the US airstrike on Libya [in 1986], Gaddafi has made an effort to distance Libya from terrorist attacks.”
Robert Baer, a retired senior CIA agent who claims Iran was behind the attack, has alleged that the Americans were wary of pursuing the country in case it disrupted oil supplies and damaged the economy.
Megrahi’s team also intended to produce evidence by a forensic expert claiming a recovered fragment of circuit board from a timing device found near the crash site, which pointed to Libyan involvement, could not have survived the explosion.
They also planned to claim there was no trace of explosive on the fragment.
The timer allegedly used to detonate the device was traced to a Swiss businessman with links to the Libyan intelligence service.
Megrahi’s lawyers would have claimed that even if the fragment did come from the bomb, the businessman’s company had supplied the Stasi in Germany where PFLP-GC terrorists were based.
Why is my comment missing?ReplyDelete
I made a screen shot - It will be posted on
another blog. The goal is to get the TRUTH!!!
Dear Sharyn, We have no reason to doubt the sincerity or the truthfulness of your posts, but unfortunately they are far removed from our subject matter, namely the trial of Baset Al-Megrahi and an inquiry into London Heathrow prior to and during the night of 21st December. The matters you cover in your posts require a blogsite other than ours, and we wish you well in your endeavours.Delete
Google "Paul Wilcher"ReplyDelete
thank you for your message. Like you I want the truth In the USA the media is suppressed to the point that those that know the Lockerbie Truth truly believe they are protected & facts will it never come out (all i know is there was a cover up-the people that were directly involved are getting older & I fear that if too much time passes the truth might never come out..). This blog and Prof Blacks Lockerbie Case blog when I do web searches are the light that shines and creates hope the truth will come out sooner than later.ReplyDelete
From an article entitled "Up in the Air" published in the Michigan Daily of 14 February 1989:ReplyDelete
Within days of the Lockerbie disaster US government spokespeople were blaming "terrorists" possibly Palestinians. Early in 1989 a CBS News report "conclusively" placed the blame on Ahmed Jibril, leader of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine - General Command (PFLP-GC), asserting that Jibril's motivation was to discredit Yasser Arafat and cause the US to pull out of talks with the PLO.
According to CBS, this "scoop" was provided by "reliable sources within the international terrorist community." In an age when "objectivity" is touted as the cornerstone of journalistic integrity, it is suspiciously convenient for a major network to about-face and refer to a "terrorist" as "reliable." It is unclear who constitutes the "international terrorist community."