Mortonhall baby ashes scandal: No criminal charges

Police say no criminal charges will be brought in the Mortonhall baby ashes scandal. Picture: Phil Wilkinson
Police say no criminal charges will be brought in the Mortonhall baby ashes scandal. Picture: Phil Wilkinson
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POLICE chiefs have confirmed no criminal charges will be brought with regard to the Mortonhall ashes scandal.

Officers were asked to consider charges against the city’s crematoria over potential breaches to the 1935 Cremation Act, after criminal complaints were lodged by parents in January.

However following consultation with the Procurator Fiscal it has been decided that “there is no basis” to report the matter for “consideration of prosecution.”

This latest twist in the scandal means an independent investigation, which has yet to be officially started by former solicitor general, Dame Elish Angiolini, can now proceed.

Complaints

She delayed launching the probe as police were still conducting criminal inquiries into cremation practices at Mortonhall and Warriston.

A Police Scotland spokesman said: “Following a number of complaints relating to Edinburgh Crematoria, robust enquiries were carried out to determine if a criminal police investigation was required.

“On progressing enquiries, officers engaged closely with Edinburgh City Council and the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service and regularly provided updates as to the progress of assessing any information that was received.

“Following consultation with the Procurator Fiscal, it has been agreed that there is no basis in the current information on which to report the matter for consideration of prosecution.

“All the information that has been gathered will now be passed to City of Edinburgh Council to assist in their enquiry. There will be no further police involvement at this time. However any new information that suggests criminality will be passed to the police for further investigation.

“Police are now in the process of updating the individuals who made complaints in relation to this matter.”