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In Pursuit of the Truth, by DCI Clive Driscoll

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In Pursuit of the Truth, by DCI Clive Driscoll

Post by Doug D on 17.10.17 13:30

I have recently finished reading In Pursuit of the Truth, by DCI Clive Driscoll chronicling his time with the Met and in particular, in the last quarter of the book, his investigation into the Stephen Lawrence murder.
 
An interesting read from someone who certainly comes across as an ‘open and honest copper’, much to the apparent chagrin of his superiors and it highlights not only the direct corruption involved in the original police investigation, but what I can only call the ongoing ‘direct and indirect corruption’ (no doubt they would call it just being ‘economical with the truth’) from these superiors in their efforts to forestall his investigation with the array of obstacles placed before him.
 
I have highlighted below a number of snippets from the book, which to my mind draw parallels with many of the actions we have seen in the MM case, other than that the OG investigation does not appear to be focused on a truthful result and seems to be terminally infected with this ‘indirect corruption’ virus.
 
To someone who has not read the book, it will probably come across as a bit dis-jointed, but I’m sure it will give a flavor of the Lawrence investigation and brings in a number of characters, organisations and methodology known through the MM case:
 
P260
It’s sad to say but I noticed there was a management style developing that actively inhibited the amazing talents the police have at their disposal – managers seemed to be more concerned with protecting themselves than encouraging officers to perform the duties they had joined to carry out. I got sick of bosses asking me, ‘What’s your exit strategy?’
 
P285
HOLMES
….he (the inputter) had been a lazy bastard: crucial information wasn’t checked in properly or wasn’t cross-checked or wasn’t actioned…….
There were probably 40 statements recorded that used that word, but if you searched for it in HOLMES – as we did- you’d draw a blank, because someone hadn’t been bothered to spell it correctly, or the same way twice or even enter it at all.
How to make a wonderful tool and an essential part of modern detective work redundant in one easy lesson.
 
P301
‘…….I have accepted responsibility for the investigation into the murder of Stephen Lawrence.’
…….there were a few dissenters even to that innocuous entry. As far as the Met were concerned, I was leading another ‘review’ and not an ‘investigation’ into young Stephen’s death…….
I never bought that.
If you are making enquiries you’re not reviewing are you?
 
P305
In 1993 FSS, led by Adrian Wain,………..
Wain rightly looked for blood on the suspects but he didn’t search for fibres from Stephen’s clothes………..there had been a two week gap……….so the odds of there being any chance of fibre transfer were low, he reasoned. What would be the point?
I can see two points.
The first is that FSS were told by the senior investigating officer to do everything possible.
And the second is that Wain said the odds were very low.
Low, but not zero.
A slim chance is still a chance.
 
P307
‘I am taking all forensic investigation away from FSS’….. (to a private company LGC)
 
P309
………I got a phone call from FSS.
“It’s a shame you don’t want to work with us because we’ve got the exhibits.’
‘I was hoping you had,’ I said. ‘I need to arrange for them to be picked up.’
‘That’s not going to happen. They belong to us.’…….
‘I will take out a warrant to retrieve them.’
….’You can’t get a warrant against the police.’
‘They’re not police, they’re government.’
But
…..common sense from FSS…. (prevailed and they did release the samples)
‘Why haven’t you sent your notes over?’
‘Because LGC is a private company and they might steal our working methods.’
‘For goodness sake….’
Again though, diplomacy saved the day.
 
P316
Since the FSS had looked at Stephen’s case, there had been massive scientific progress, particularly in the area of DNA testing.
 
P326
…I didn’t have to move desk; the even better news was we were going to Trident – run by Chief Superintendent Helen Ball
 
P329
Even though we hadn’t used them this time around, the bloody FSS was still casting a long shadow on my investigation……..
 
………….A lot of material seemed to have vanished in the transfer from FSS to LGC. In particular items pertaining to 1995-2000. It would be months before the mystery was solved.
It was very simple really…………it had been filed as part of a Brixton burglary.
 
P333
Ed Jarman at LGC……….
We’ve found Stephen’s blood………..on Gary Dobsons jacket.’
 
P336
It was a fibre of Dobson’s jacket, with Stephen’s blood around it……. ‘It means the blood was wet when it went on. It couldn’t have been transferred in any way other than during the attack’.
 
In our defence, - and for once , in FSS’s defence – the evidence was the ‘newest’ there was. The technology to find it had not existed back in the early 90’s……..
 
P343
….at the same time that my investigation was being shot at verbally, it was also being attacked physically. With the investigation in full swing I was told we were being moved again – this time to Tintagel House……….
 
P352
Yet again, external forces seemed to be hellbent on disrupting the smooth running of …… (the investigation). When I was told we had to vacate our offices at Tintagel House, I nearly laughed.
‘It’s being sold.’
Did I believe it? Well the fact they moved another squad in as soon as we left and spent thousands of pounds renovating it to accommodate Firearms soon answered that question.
 
It wasn’t just the timing that concerned me. It was either the worst form of stupidity ever or someone, somewhere was trying to cause problems. I’m sad to
 say that with each passing month on young Stephen’s case, I was getting more and more hardened to the unsavoury truth.
 
P356
Once again an unseen hand above me had intervened and printed in police notices was news that my team would be disbanded after the trial.
I couldn’t believe it. I wrote straight back to Chief Superintendent Stuart Cundy and said ‘If I didn’t know better, I’d think you were trying to disrupt this case.’
 
P360
No one could have heard their evidence, in my opinion, and not been persuaded.
So why was I reading a different version in the papers?......with a negative twist.
…bumped into a crime writer……… ‘Are you in Court 15 today?’ ….. ‘No, I’m in Court 16 covering your case.’
‘Are you sure about that? Because from what you’re writing, I swear you’re seeing a different case to me. I don’t know where you get half your information.’
‘We get it from your press office’……..’The Met press office told us this, that, the other……’
Was it intentional? Was someone still trying to knock us off track, hoping the jury would read a negative story and change their minds? Or was it another error? The trouble with the Met is you’re never far from either.
 
P368
I was left in no doubt that certain people around that table wanted the investigation shut down. If I’m honest, they’d wanted it buried years ago. How else do you explain my team being disrupted the way it was: moved five times, including once to a building without HOLMES computers and briefed against in the press.
 
Compromise was agreed. A murder review panel would investigate all further options………..
 
‘Apparently there’s a report which I recommend you see.’
 
‘Have you seen a copy of this report?’
 
‘No, I’ve never seen it.’
 
A month later I got a call from Cressida Dick. ‘What’s this report the murder review group is chasing me for?’ she asked.
 
‘The report we were told about after the trial.’
 
……if I hadn’t dug my heels in (at the post-trial meeting) the investigation would have been closed, based on a report that didn’t exist.
 
An investigation in police corruption…… had begun in 1998. …. targeted a dozen or so officers of interest. One of them was Davidson (one of the original Lawrence investigators and ‘friend’ of one of the convicted’s father).
 
There are two lightning bolts in this story. The first is that a police officer allegedly scuppered, for his own financial gain, the original investigation into Stephen Lawrence. As Mrs L. said ‘It’s what we suspected all along.’
 
But do you know what’s worse? That we – the Met – tried to cover it up.
 
I’ve always been an advocate of telling the truth………If you try to cover things up, they get magnified when they finally come out. And trust me, things always come out eventually.
 
P373
Peter Spindler (Commander, Directorate of Professional Standards) then tried to talk Mrs L out of going to see the Home Secretary the following Monday. Which was probably a little dodgy in itself. His reason? He had documentation showing the Met hadn’t done the things the papers and everyone was saying we had.
‘Who wrote that report?’ she asked.
He told her.
‘OK.’
He then mentioned the name of a retired senior officer.
‘Hmm,’ she said. ‘There were some concerns about him, if I remember correctly.’
 
…..as far as she was concerned, Monday’s meeting with Theresa May could not come soon enough.
 
P374
When she managed to persuade the Home Secretary to instigate a review into police corruption on Stephen’s investigation, she asked me who I thought should run it.
‘Mark Ellison QC, no question.’
 
Mr Ellison was never intending speaking to me. I had no specific knowledge of Stephen’s case prior to 2006 and the alleged corruption took place in the 90’s.
 
When the DPS struggled to find one or two essential files requested by the enquiry, he got in touch and I stepped in to help. Given that one of the questions Mr Ellison was considering was ‘Was the Macpherson inquiry provided with all relevant material connected to the issue of possible corrupt activity by any officer associated with the initial investigation of the murder of Stephen Lawrence?’ it was outlandish to assume they’d withhold anything from him.
And what do you know? I located everything that was needed within half an hour.
The Job came down on me for this. Everything, I was told in no uncertain terms, had to go through the DPS.
‘But they can’t find anything!’
……..another explosion rocked proceedings. A one time undercover officer, Peter Francis, went public with accusations of surveillance on the Lawrence family carried out in 1993.
………….a concerted effort to discredit the Lawrence’s because of their attacks on the police investigation……………Duwayne Brooks (friend that had been with Stephen on the night of the murder)…arrest and subsequent court appearance were both , he said, ‘arranged’ by the Met.
To Duwayne, this was nothing he hadn’t suspected all along. To Mrs L. however it was a bombshell. She already knew her son’s death had been poorly investigated because of racist attitudes. She knew a corrupt officer had prevented anyone being brought to justice for years. She had even learned that the Met knew about this corruption and had hidden it from Macpherson. But now she was being told that she and her family had been investigated in secret because they were considered dangerous to the police.
You couldn’t make it up.
 
P376
Mark Ellison’s report….published in January 2014 and firmly pointed the finger at the Met for the outrageous way they had treated Mr and Baroness Lawrence and Duwayne in life, and Stephen in death.
 
To me the way to appease a family so publicly wronged by the police force created to serve them would be to say, ‘We apologise for what has gone on in the past and we want to rectify that by throwing everything we have at continuing the investigation into Stephen’s murder.’ (Driscoll wanted to go after the others involved)
What they actually did was wind it all down……..they got rid of me.
 
P379
If they want to pursue the truth about Stephen, I am at their disposal.
I’m still waiting for that phone to ring.
 
P384 Acknowledgements
To Alison Saunders and the CPS team, Mr Mark Ellison QC and Alison Morgan, the junior barrister during Stephen’s case and all the scientists from LGC – from an unworthy and humble police officer, you were simply the best. The word ‘magnificent’ does not do you justice – thank you. 
 
………………………………………………
 
So retired DCI Driscoll is now sat at home twiddling his thumbs, waiting for a phone call which will never come.
 
What would we give for someone like him, not afraid of stepping on people’s toes, to muscle in on OG and actually get to grips with what really happened?

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Re: In Pursuit of the Truth, by DCI Clive Driscoll

Post by Get'emGonçalo on 17.10.17 13:44

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Re: In Pursuit of the Truth, by DCI Clive Driscoll

Post by Get'emGonçalo on 17.10.17 13:50



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Published on 1 Mar 2016

A detective was removed from his post after telling colleagues he wanted to approach Paul Boateng - then government minister in charge of police. Multiple sources have told the BBC they believe Det Insp Clive Driscoll intended to ask Mr Boateng what - if anything - he knew of a known paedophile, John Carroll. But before Mr Driscoll could approach him in 1998 he was axed from the case. There is no suggestion Paul Boateng - now a Lord - had done anything wrong. Nick Hopkins reports.

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operation fernbridge

Post by willowthewisp on 17.10.17 14:07

Hi Dougd,thanks for the article,Clive Driscoll,Stephen Lawrence Murder?
Now,forgive me,but if a former Police Officer can see how the system was being Perverted by corrupt Police Officers,then what chance do the Public remain to have any confidence in how,they Police the communities,they are supposed to,"Serve and Protect"from criminal elements,when some of the criminals are within the Organisation?

Why hasn't the Metropolitan Police Service not been disbanded due to their Conduct on these Investigations alone,from Mr Driscoll reports to fellow Officers?
Seriously,how can you have Police Officers being paid to protect society,then being corrupted via Money or black Mail,to facilitate knowledge of Police investigations,back to the criminal Under world and think that society will Not become affected?
Yesterdays Evening news,channel 4 16 October 2017, has a family excluded from an"Official Investigation"into a Death of their Son on a Public Highway,via the Police who were chasing a suspect in Three or more Unmarked Police cars,that may have resulted in the Moped driver losing his Life?
The Police Officers were to give their evidence from behind screens,that the"Family"would be placed ina different building from where the evidence was being given,so they couldn't ask appropriate relevant questions to the Coroner or Court,is this Lawful?
It is no wonder the Police are no longer believed to be impartial in day to day dealings in society,this needs to attended to to stop any further break down of civil rights?
I haven't watched the TV video of Mr Driscoll-Paul Boetang,being very quickly diverted from asking any serious pertinent questions on child abuse knowing a Mr John Carrol?
Surely this level of blatant disinformation type of closing down of discussions needs to be addressed?
if the Police or press are stopped from asking questions of people knowing each other,that you cannot investigate within"Public Interest"on issues in regard to child abuse connections,then something is clearly wrong with today's Policing methods,or are the press being suppressed by the state?

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Re: In Pursuit of the Truth, by DCI Clive Driscoll

Post by Doug D on 21.10.17 12:04

Trying to bring this up to date since the book:
 
 
Stephen Lawrence murder: insufficient evidence to prosecute sixth suspect
 
CPS confirms no further action will be taken against man who was arrested last December and who has not been named
 
Press Association
Monday 24 November 2014 11.50 GMT
A sixth man held over the murder of black teenager [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] will not be prosecuted due to insufficient evidence.
The [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] has confirmed no further action will be taken against the suspect, who has not been named and was arrested 11 months ago.
Lawrence, 18, who wanted to be an architect, was stabbed to death by a group of up to six white youths in an unprovoked racist attack as he waited at a bus stop in Well Hall Road, Eltham, south-east [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.], with a friend on 22 April 1993.
It took more than 18 years to bring two of his killers – Gary Dobson and David Norris – to justice.
Three other men have also previously been named as suspects but deny involvement.
An inquiry following the murder found failings in how the [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]had investigated the crime and led to the force being accused of institutional racism.
Lionel Idan, deputy chief crown prosecutor, said: “On October 21 the CPS decided that no further action will be taken in relation to an individual, identified as a suspect in the ongoing police investigation into the murder of Stephen Lawrence.
“A file was received on 31 May 2014 from the Metropolitan police. After careful consideration it has been decided that there is insufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction.
“The decision has been made in accordance with the code for crown prosecutors.
“Any decision by the CPS does not imply any finding concerning guilt or criminal conduct – the CPS makes decisions only according to the test set out in the code for crown prosecutors and it is applied in all decisions on whether or not to prosecute.”
A Metropolitan police spokesman confirmed the man, who is in his 40s, was arrested on 23 December last year on suspicion of Lawrence’s murder.
The spokesman said: “He was bailed to return pending further inquiries and a file submitted to the CPS for their consideration.
“The individual has now been advised there will be no further action against him.”
It comes as a senior police officer facing claims of discreditable conduct linked to the case prepared to be reinstated to full duties next week.
Scotland Yard confirmed last month that Commander Richard Walton, who was removed from operational duties in March, will resume his role on 1 December, even though he is still facing an inquiry by the Independent [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] Complaints Commission.
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Punctuation error led to evidence mistake in Stephen Lawrence murder case


·        [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
13 SEPTEMBER 2016 • 9:30AM
Awrongly interpreted punctuation mark meant police investigating Stephen Lawrence's murder did not realise a crucial piece of evidence had been found close to the scene for more than 20 years, detectives have admitted. 
A leather bag strap, which [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.], was wrongly documented as being found up to 90 metres (295ft) away from where the teenager was attacked.
Police have now discovered the strap was actually found just 4.5 metres (14.7ft) away from a pool of Mr Lawrence's blood and eight metres (26.2ft) away from his bag.
Officers believe it may have been part of a weapon used to fatally injure the student as he waited for a bus in Eltham, south east London, in April 1993.  Chris Le Pere, the senior investigating officer, said it was similar to a homemade weapon found in the home of David Norris, one of the men convicted of the murder. 
The admission comes amid an investigation into alleged police corruption in relation to the murder inquiry, which was launched by the National Crime Agency (NCA) last year and is still ongoing.
It also came as the Metropolitan Police revealed on BBC’s Crimewatch that they are offering £20,000 to anyone that can provide information that leads to a successful prosecution.
The episode of Crimewatch, which aired at 9pm last night, also contained an interview with Stephen's father Neville as well as the first reconstruction of the attack, showing a gang of six men attacking the teenager before sprinting away.
Mr Le Pere said the location of the strap was correctly identified by the scene examiner in his notes in the immediate aftermath of the attack.
The change was introduced by a somebody else at a later stage after they were tasked to write the examiner’s statement because he was out of the country.  
Mr Le Pere explained: “The punctuation [from the scene examiner’s notes] hadn’t been read correctly. He described a strap being at the scene on Dickson Road and then the next exhibit is found outside number 290 Well Hall Road and they have joined those two exhibits thinking they are both outside number 290.”
The examiner then signed the statement without noticing the error because his notes were not to hand.
Despite reviews and investigations into the case - including in 2002, when five swabs were taken from the bag - the mistake was not uncovered until 2014 when Mr Le Pere’s team reviewed the evidence.
The 66cm-long strap has now been swabbed 70 times. As well as the female profile, several partial male DNAs have also been discovered, although there is not enough information to take these any further.
“I believe this did not belong to Stephen, I believe it has been left at the scene by the suspects,” Mr Le Pere said. “It is known that David Norris… had an adapted offensive weapon with a hammer head at the end of a strap. I am exploring that it might have also been an adapted offensive weapon.”
Mr Le Pere insisted it was an “honest” and “innocent” error, and said he would be happy to disclose any lines of inquiry to the Independent Police Complaints Commission. “In my judgement there is no misconduct involved in this,” he added.
He said the unknown woman was not being treated as a suspect but instead as a potentially crucial witness. Officers are also exploring whether the bag was stolen and are completing DNA testing in a bid to identify the woman.
   
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Stephen Lawrence murder suspect 'hiding in Spain'


Jamie Acourt is wanted on drugs charges
 
·       [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] 
·       Thursday 20 October 2016 12:08 BST
 
A suspect in the murder of [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] who is wanted for drug dealing is among 10 British criminals thought to be hiding in Spain.
Jamie Acourt, 40, from south-east London, was allegedly part of a cannabis-dealing gang between January 2014 and February 2016.
He previously achieved notoriety after he was named as one of the suspects in the investigation into the racist murder of 18-year-old Stephen. The teenager was killed by up to six attackers in 1993, two of whom, David Norris and Gary Dobson, were convicted and are serving life sentences.
 
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Former Stephen Lawrence murder suspect jailed over £4m drug plot
 
Neil Acourt was described as ‘man at the top’ of a scheme to funnel cannabis into northern England
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] and agency, Friday 24 February 2017 19.01 GMT
A former suspect in the murder of [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] has been jailed for more than six years over a £4m drug plot.
Neil Acourt was arrested but not prosecuted for the racist murder of the black 18-year-old, who was stabbed to death by a group of white men in Eltham in 1993, but he now faces a spell in prison after [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.].
The 41-year-old, also known as Neil Stuart, was described as the “man at the top” of a scheme funnelling huge amounts of the drug to the north-east of England. He was sentenced on Friday at Kingston crown court alongside his best friend and father-in-law. 
He was jailed for six years and three months for conspiracy to supply a class B drug, with recorder Paul Clements describing the plot as a planned and concerted effort to move substantial amounts of cannabis “that in any estimation would have kept the people of the Newcastle area in spliffs for many a long day”.
The plot took place over two years and involved dozens of 600-mile (965km) round trips from London to the South Shields area, during which they transported drugs and cash. 
Clements told all six men involved in the plot that is was “stupid and criminal”. He said: “The police caught red-handed some of you, with in effect 100kg of cannabis. A substantial amount by any standards.
“There was a sufficient flow of money down the channel that there must have been other transportations of cannabis. Look at you all now sitting there, from the age running from 28 to 63. All thoroughly ashamed and all to one degree or another you have ruined your lives.
“All recognise the depth of the criminality, all apparently recognising how damaging drugs are to the people addicted to them. All of you were involved in a pre-planned concerted conspiracy to move substantial amounts of cannabis that in any estimation would have kept the people of Newcastle area in spliffs for many a long day.” 
Jonas Milner, defending Acourt, who has two previous convictions unrelated to drugs, said his client “genuinely regrets” his actions and was a family man.
Acourt’s role in the plot was to handle bundles of cash, ranging from £15,000 to £40,000 each, in return for 2.5% of the money the gang made. Also jailed were Acourt’s childhood friend James Botton, 45, his father-in-law Jack Vose, 63, and family friend Lee Birks, 55, as well as Paul Beavers, 49, and Daniel Thompson, 28.
Lawrence was killed by a group of up to six white males in an unprovoked attack as he waited at a bus stop in Eltham, south-east London, with a friend on 22 April 1993. Acourt was arrested but not prosecuted for the killing, while in 2012 two other suspects, [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.], were convicted of murdering Lawrence and jailed for life.
In 2002 [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] following a racist attack on an off-duty police officer during which Norris hurled a drink and shouted “nigger” at the officer while Acourt drove a vehicle at him. The attack took place less than a mile away from where Lawrence was murdered a decade earlier.


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Murderer who got away: 20 years ago today, the Mail accused five men of killing Stephen Lawrence. Two have been convicted, one's in jail on a drugs charge and a 4th is on the run. But the 5th still brazenly walks the streets where he committed his crime
 
·       Luke Knight photographed strolling two miles from where Stephen was stabbed
·       40-year-old is unrecognisable from brute who smirked at claims he was involved
·       Stephen was killed in unprovoked gang attack as he waited at a bus stop in 1993
·       Two members of Eltham gang - Gary Dobson and David Norris - both serving life
·       A third, Neil Acourt, is awaiting sentencing for masterminding a £4m drugs ring
·       His brother, Jamie, is wanted for links to drugs crimes and is on the run in Spain
·        
By [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] and [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
PUBLISHED: 22:00, 13 February 2017 UPDATED: 08:41, 14 February 2017

Posing in country casuals, he is the last of Stephen Lawrence’s killers still on the streets of Eltham.
 
Luke Knight, 40, is unrecognisable from the snarling brute who smirked at claims he was one of the five racists behind the black teenager’s death.
 
Twenty years after the Daily Mail accused the gang of murder, he cuts a pathetic figure strolling just two miles from where Stephen, 18, was fatally stabbed. The A-level student was killed in a savage and unprovoked gang attack as he waited at a bus-stop with a friend in 1993.
 
Two members of the Eltham gang, Gary Dobson, 41, and David Norris, 40, are serving life for Stephen’s killing after a forensic breakthrough led to a second murder trial five years ago.
A third, 41-year-old Neil Acourt, is in prison awaiting sentencing for masterminding a £4million cannabis smuggling ring.
 
His 40-year-old brother Jamie, the fourth man we named, is wanted by police for his links to serious drugs crimes. He is on the run in Spain where detectives believe he is being harboured by ‘Costa del Crime’ contacts.
 
That just leaves father of two Knight remaining on the south-east London stomping ground where the murderous gang thought themselves above the law.
 
After a shambolic police investigation, two prosecutions and an inquest all failed to secure justice for Stephen and his family, the Daily Mail went to the extraordinary lengths of naming all five of the gang beneath the headline ‘MURDERERS’.
 
‘If we are wrong, let them sue us,’ we said, throwing down a legal gauntlet to the five men who had all arrogantly refused to answer questions about Stephen’s murder for fear of incriminating themselves.

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In accusing them, this newspaper took a monumental risk – but one which ultimately paid off – triggering a public inquiry into Stephen’s death and triggering a change to the centuries-old double jeopardy rule that had prevented cleared suspects being tried for the same murder twice.
 
It sparked massive internal reform of the Metropolitan Police Service which was, at the time of Stephen’s killing, condemned as ‘institutionally racist’. It also heralded the Race Relations Amendment Act requiring public bodies to stamp out discrimination and to promote equal opportunities.

Stephen’s 64-year-old mother Doreen – now Baroness Lawrence – said the Mail’s stand was ‘a proud moment’.
 
‘A national daily newspaper had the courage to put on its front page what others were too frightened to do,’ she said.
 
‘It did the decent thing. From then on, all of Britain would know who the suspects were. They would not be able to hide.’
 
Two decades on, the Mail still has its eye on these ruthless thugs as it continues to fight for justice for Stephen and his long-suffering parents.
 
For while Dobson and Norris are locked up in high security prisons, their three ‘brothers in crime’ are yet to be punished for their part in Stephen’s murder.
 
A shameful veil of silence that has obstructed investigations into Stephen’s murder from the very start still shrouds the truth.
 
To this day, anyone asking questions on the streets of Eltham where the gang’s families still live is met with instant hostility. Knight’s mother shamelessly told us: ‘Nobody here will talk to you.’
 
Friends and relatives of the five men hide behind closed doors, refusing to speak.
 
Letters and phone messages have gone unanswered. Their glamorous girlfriends and ex-partners continue to keep a low profile.
 
The ‘Eltham omerta’, it seems, is as powerful as ever. Potential witnesses fear they may pay a heavy price if word gets out that they have spoken to the police.
 
The name ‘Stephen Lawrence’ is met with an uncomfortable and eerie silence in the pubs, such as the Beehive in New Eltham, where the five suspects used to drink.
 
Scotland Yard is still hoping for a breakthrough that will see the remaining members of the murderous gang finally face justice.

 
But last year when detectives again attempted to crack the case with a mass voluntary DNA screening programme, they managed to obtain samples from less than half of those they approached.
 
They were hoping to find a match with DNA from an unknown female found on a black leather bag strap collected from the murder scene in 1993 and believed to have been used as part of a home-made weapon. A similar custom-made weapon was found at the home of Norris. The strap was disregarded in the early days of the flawed police investigation after it was incorrectly recorded that it had been discovered 80 yards from where Stephen was attacked.
 
In fact it was found just five yards away.
 
To date, officers have spoken to more than 110 people in connection with this particular line of inquiry. Around half have volunteered samples, 46 have declined, 12 failed to respond to police requests and the remainder were eliminated for medical reasons.
Shamefully, the majority of those who declined to offer DNA samples were family, friends and associates of the original five suspects.

Lead investigator Chris Le Pere told a press conference that while associates and relatives of key suspects had been approached and asked to provide DNA, there had been, in terms of responses from those individuals, ‘an awful lot of negatives’.


He and his team are also continuing to appeal for help in tracing a man caught on CCTV in an off-licence at about 8pm on the night of the murder, 100 yards from where Stephen was attacked.
The man was wearing a green jacket with a distinctive ‘V’ emblem on the back but despite the clarity of the CCTV images, appeals for information have again fallen on Eltham’s deaf ears.
 
Market trader’s son Luke Knight, who attended Kidbrooke School with fellow suspect Jamie Acourt, continues to depend on this wall of silence among his acquaintances for keeping himself out of prison.
 
He has never displayed a shred of remorse for Stephen’s killing but has consistently whined about the impact it has had on his own life.
 
Ten years ago he even claimed he was suffering psychological problems brought on by threats from anti-racist campaigners and tried, in vain, to persuade Greenwich Council to rehouse him because of intimidation.
 
Despite his apparent struggle to make ends meet, he has been seen driving around in a £22,000 Nissan Qashqai bought new five years ago shortly before his partners in crime, Dobson and Norris, were jailed. He is currently working as a roofer and casual labourer.
 
Back in 1993, all five men were prime movers in a notorious gang led by the Acourt brothers who liked to refer to themselves as The Krays and who were already known to the police for their racist tendencies and violent knife crimes.
 
Their cold-blooded attack on Stephen as he waited for a bus with his friend Duwayne Brooks on April 22, 1993, bore all the hallmarks of the savage racist lynchings once inflicted on blacks living in America’s Deep South.
 
While Mr Brooks narrowly escaped, Stephen, who hoped to become an architect, suffered two stab wounds to the upper torso that severed major blood vessels. He tried to flee with his friend but collapsed and died in hospital.
 
Although the names of the five suspects were given to police virtually overnight, the early investigation was hampered by an appalling assumption by some officers that simply because he was black, Stephen was probably involved in a gang of his own and somehow partly to blame for the violent altercation that led to his killing.
 
All five men were eventually arrested but while both Knight and Neil Acourt were charged with murder, the CPS dropped the prosecution on the grounds that ID evidence from Mr Brooks was unreliable.
 
Outraged that no action had been taken against their son’s killers, Baroness Lawrence and then husband Neville launched a private prosecution in 1994 against Gary Dobson, Luke Knight and Neil Acourt.
 
But the trial, in April 1996, collapsed when the judge ruled that the identification evidence from Mr Brooks was inadmissible.

A year later, at an inquest into Stephen’s death, the five suspects again refused to answer any questions about how he died, angering coroner Sir Montague Levine who gave a verdict of unlawful killing ‘in a completely unprovoked racist attack by five youths’.


In a heart-rending statement she gave at the end of the inquest on February 13, 1997, Stephen’s mother denounced the British justice system for ‘making a clear statement to the black community that their lives are worth nothing’.

The Daily Mail made the decision to publish its historic front page just hours later.
By challenging these five men to sue us if we were wrong, the Mail presented them with an opportunity to speak about what happened that day in a court of a law.
If the men were not – are not – murderers, they would have been entitled to massive libel damages.
 
But they kept their vow of silence knowing that if they told the truth about what happened to Stephen they would have incriminated themselves in his murder. Ever since that day two decades ago, the Stephen Lawrence case has been placed firmly at the heart of public consciousness, holding up an uncomfortable mirror to a society which, in the words of Baroness Lawrence, once supported ‘racist murderers against innocent people’.

When Sir William Macpherson published his official report into the killing and the subsequent investigation in 1998, he accused the Metropolitan Police of ‘institutional racism’ and made far-reaching recommendations aimed at clamping down on discrimination which have created seismic shifts within British society.
 
Today there are three inquiries into the Lawrence case.
 
The National Crime Agency is investigating alleged corruption in the original Lawrence murder inquiry.
 
There is also a probe by the Independent Police Complaints Commission into former Scotland Yard commissioner Lord Stevens amid claims that documents were not passed to Macpherson’s 1998 inquiry. The peer denies any wrongdoing.
 
Most significantly of all, Scotland Yard still has a team of detectives working on Operation Fishpool, the investigation into Stephen’s murder.
 
Clive Driscoll, the retired Scotland Yard detective chief inspector who led the successful reinvestigation of the Lawrence case, is still hopeful that further murder convictions will be secured. ‘It will happen if witnesses who have been too frightened to speak come forward,’ he said. ‘If there are further advances in forensic science and if there is a willingness in the CPS and the police to pursue complete justice.’
 
Scotland Yard told the Mail last night: ‘The Met continues to investigate the murder of Stephen Lawrence and is currently focusing on two lines of enquiry; a bag strap recovered from the scene which contains the DNA of an unknown female who police still wish to identify. Also, a male witness seen nearby at the time of the murder, who was wearing a distinctive green jacket with a V emblem on the back.’
 
One thing is for certain, while those involved in the unprovoked murder, men like Knight, still walk free, the fight for justice for Stephen must go on.
Indeed, at a time when the British Press is under fire like never before, that fight serves as a reminder of the power of courageous journalism and the importance of relentless campaigning.
 
Without them, the monumental police failures which surrounded the murder of Stephen would never have been uncovered. Dobson and Norris would not be in prison serving life sentences.
As for the other three, Knight and Neil and Jamie Acourt – who knows what lies around the corner for them while this newspaper and other truth-seekers continue to snap at their heels? 
 
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BBC1 to show series about murdered teenager Stephen Lawrence
 
The makers of Amy tackle the killing that changed modern Britain
·        
By [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
Thursday, 24th August 2017 at 10:30 am
 
Oscar winning directors James Gay-Rees and Asif Kapadia are making a landmark documentary about the murder of teenager Stephen Lawrence for BBC1.
The three-part series, provisionally called The Stephen Lawrence Story, will examine the murder of 18-year-old black student by a group of white teenage boys.
It will also probe  the complex and mishandled murder investigation which allowed the suspected killers to evade justice for almost 20 years.
The murder led to the Macpherson Report, which coined the phrase “institutional racism” and led to a revision of the double jeopardy laws in the UK as the police sought to prosecute the suspects.
“For the first time BBC1 will be looking at every aspect of the case including the subsequent inquiries, pulling it into one complete timeline and asking the same relevant questions of a contemporary Britain,” said the BBC in a statement.
The film will air around April 2018, to mark the 25th anniversary of Stephen’s murder on April 22 1993, and promises unprecedented access to people involved in the story.
Baroness Lawrence, Stephen’s mother, said: “My son Stephen was brutally taken from my family nearly 25 years ago. This documentary will be the definitive narrative of the events of the past quarter of a century – a full, frank and comprehensive drawing together of the story that has shaped the lives of both my family and myself since that fateful April night.
“But in addition to that, it is my story – that of a parent’s loss of a child, a sibling taken in unimaginable circumstances from his brother and sister and our family’s fight for justice against the odds and the system that we always believed was there to help and protect us all without the evil of racism. With every story comes an end and this final BBC documentary in conjunction with the On The Corner team will be my final public word on the events.  Whilst Stephen will always travel with us, a new journey is ahead for us all…..”


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…………………………………………..
 
Somewhat strange comments from Baroness Lawrence in the last paragraph.
 
Whilst at some stage it must be nice for her to finally draw a line under the investigations, unless she has been advised that ‘Operation Fishpool’ can go no further, I would have thought she would have wanted to keep hoping that something would turn up in order to get any others involved convicted.
 
There is also the ongoing IPCC investigation, which doesn’t appear to have reported its outcomes yet.

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In pursuit of the Truth-Clive Driscoll

Post by willowthewisp on 21.10.17 16:34

Hi DougD,thanks for your posts on this tragic Murder of Stephen Lawrence.

Congratulations to Clive Driscoll and all of the other Police Officers involved in trying to Right a Wrong,that should never have happened in the First place,in this Murder Investigation.

To all other Police Officers,who knew full well what they were doing in facilitating,colluding with members of the Not innocent parties,as named in the Daily Mail,hope you are proud of the way,that you failed on your"Oaths"as Police Officers in your Civil Duties,"Without Fear, Nor Favour"which you failed drastically,due to your fellow Officers not being corrupted,but you were?

It is quite alarming to think that a Woman,Doreen Lawrence,will have to attend the House of Lords,in the knowledge,that Senior Ranked Officials,who served in the Metropolitan Police Force,will now be able to pass Laws,to protect society,which they have clearly failed as fellow Police Officers,during their time of Police service,Lord Stevens!?

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Re: In Pursuit of the Truth, by DCI Clive Driscoll

Post by Doug D on 27.10.17 22:03

So the IPCC have concluded their investigation into whether information was withheld from the 1998 inquiry (shouldn’t have been too difficult!), but the corruption investigation is ongoing and the first inquiry won’t conclude until the second one does, in case it brings to light any more relevant evidence.
 
…………………………………………………..
 
Update on IPCC investigation into alleged failures relating to Stephen Lawrence Inquiry
 
Jun 20, 2017
 
The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) has been investigating whether there was a failure of top rank or very senior Metropolitan Police officers to provide full, frank and truthful information on the issue of corruption to the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry in 1998. The investigation followed a public complaint to the MPS from Neville Lawrence OBE.

IPCC Deputy Chair Sarah Green, who has been overseeing the investigation said today:

“We have gathered and analysed thousands of pages of documentary evidence over the past two years including evidence not originally available to the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry or the review conducted by Mark Ellison QC and published in March 2014. Three former Metropolitan Police officers have been interviewed and at this stage no investigative actions are outstanding.

“We have liaised with the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) over that period and have been provided with ongoing advice. Following our most recent discussions with the CPS, I have decided the investigation cannot be concluded and a final report submitted until it is clear that a separate and ongoing IPCC managed investigation will not produce further evidence relevant to this investigation. That investigation is considering whether corruption played a part in the original investigation into Stephen Lawrence’s murder and the assault on Duwayne Brooks.

“All concerned parties have been informed of my decision.

“Whilst I appreciate this step is likely to be difficult and disappointing for all of those concerned, it’s vital that we continue to unravel events from many years ago so that we can finally bring these matters to conclusion.”
 
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IPCC investigating alleged corruption during original Stephen Lawrence murder investigation
 
Oct 16, 2015
 
The Independent Police Complaints Commission is investigating alleged police corruption during the original investigation into the murder of Stephen Lawrence.

The IPCC received a referral from the MPS in April 2014 and decided in August to investigate.

The National Crime Agency was asked, and agreed, to conduct an investigation under the direction and control of the IPCC. The IPCC confirmed the appointment of Roy McComb, NCA Deputy Director for Specialist Investigations, to lead the investigation in March 2015.

The IPCC is updating Stephen’s parents, Mr Lawrence and Baroness Lawrence, and Duwayne Brooks as the investigation progresses.

 
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