Lawyers for a nurse convicted of murdering four patients have referred his case to the Criminal Cases Review Commission.
Glasgow-born “Angel of Death” Colin Norris was jailed for at least 30 years after being found guilty in March 2008 of murdering the elderly patients while working in Leeds General Infirmary and the city’s St James’s Hospital in 2002.
However, his solicitors said “compelling” new evidence suggests that evidence presented at the trial was “inaccurate and misleading”. They said it casts “serious doubts” over the safety of his conviction.
Norris’s trial, in Newcastle Crown Court, was told Ethel Hall, 86, who did not have diabetes, had been injected with a massive, fatal dose of insulin which reduced the sugar content in her blood to a level which starved her brain of the glucose needed to function properly.
Tests showed her insulin levels at 12 times the norm, the court heard.
Norris has always protested his innocence and denied injecting patients with insulin.
Professor Vincent Marks, an insulin expert, told a recent BBC investigation research he carried out showed hypoglycaemic episodes (people slipping into comas) were not “that rare” among elderly patients in hospitals.
The matter has now been referred to the Criminal Cases Review Commission, the independent public body set up to investigate possible miscarriages of justice in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. It assesses whether convictions or sentences should be referred to a court of appeal.
In a statement yesterday, Jeremy Moore, of Carter Moore Solicitors, said: “We have today lodged an application to the Criminal Cases Review Commission on behalf of Colin Norris who was convicted in 2008 of the murder of four of his former patients. The application is supported by compelling new evidence from one of the world’s leading experts on insulin poisoning and hypoglycaemia, Professor Vincent Marks.
“We believe that this new evidence establishes that the evidence presented at Colin’s trial was both inaccurate and misleading, and therefore casts serious doubts on the safety of his conviction.”