Forensic folly

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Few forensic-based cases have caused greater concern than the Lockerbie trial, with the review commission deeply concerned by the prosecution’s tactics of disinformation (your report, 23 December).

The lead prosecutor, Colin Boyd, was also involved in an earlier forensic disaster when the fingerprint evidence against Detective Constable Shirley McKie was thrown out and the she was acquitted.

One of the foremost critics of the trial is the famous criminal lawyer Michael Mansfield, who has long warned against over-reliance on forensic evidence to secure convictions.

He said: “Some of the worst miscarriages of justice in British legal history have come from cases in which the forensic science was later shown to have been grossly misleading.”

The idea of a long-timer bomb starting at Malta in a piece of
unaccompanied baggage before finding its way on to Pan Am 103 is beyond absurdity.

There is no proof it entered at Malta – in fact, Air Malta won a libel action establishing it did not – and the evidence of a 
Heathrow-loaded barometric device is overwhelming.

(Dr) John Cameron

Howard Place

St Andrews

I do not understand the 
Megrahi deniers (Letters, 23 December). If Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi was not responsible for Lockerbie that means that after 26 years the Scottish Government has failed to hold a single person accountable for the murder of 270 
people in Scotland’s worst terrorist atrocity.

That surely is a definition of “miscarriage of justice”.

This is compounded by the fact that it prematurely released the person it thought was 
responsible and then sought to spin the news of his release by writing to Nelson Mandela et al to encourage them to endorse the decision.

Miscarriage of justice compounded.

Neil Sinclair

Clarence Street

Edinburgh

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