Top judge to conduct inquest into G20 death

A SENIOR judge will be appointed to oversee an inquest into the death of Ian Tomlinson at the "earliest opportunity".

Talks have already taken place between the Lord Chief Justice Lord Judge and the Ministry of Justice to identify a suitable candidate.

Mr Tomlinson, 47, died after collapsing on the pavement on the fringes of angry G20 protests in London on 1 April last year.

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His death became global news after video evidence emerged that challenged the original official version of events. Pathologist Dr Freddy Patel found he died of natural causes but an amateur video showed Mr Tomlinson being pushed to the ground by a police officer.

PC Simon Harwood, a member of the Metropolitan Police's territorial support group, avoided prosecution but faces being sacked under misconduct proceedings. A pre-inquest hearing was yesterday postponed until December by City of London coroner Paul Matthews. He wrote to the government requesting a senior judicial figure take over the case because of its potential implications.

The hearing is likely to examine the actions of police, the pathologist, the coroner and independent investigators.