Document:Justice for Megrahi awaits at the Supreme Court
- Aamer Anwar & Co.
- 63 Carlton Place
- Scotland G5 9TW
- 4th April 2021
- Dear Mr Anwar,
- JUSTICE FOR MEGRAHI AWAITS AT THE SUPREME COURT
A written Judgment issued on 1 April 2021 by Lord Carloway, the Lord Justice General, said the court "has had some difficulty in understanding the exact nature of the challenge".
It said: "Although the case is clearly one of public importance, the proposed grounds of appeal do not raise points of law of general public importance.
"The principles of law which the court applied were all well known, settled and largely uncontroversial in the appeal.
"For these reasons, the court refuses permission to appeal to the UK Supreme Court."
Megrahi's son Ali al-Megrahi, who has maintained his father’s innocence and is determined to fulfil the promise he made to clear his name and that of Libya, clearly cannot accept the Scots Appeal Court ruling. He said:
As Emeritus Professor of Lockerbie Studies, I have been closely monitoring all the developments in the Pan Am Flight 103 case that have unfolded since 21 December 1988. There is in my view only one ground of appeal which is likely to succeed in overturning Abdelbaset al-Megrahi's conviction in the UK Supreme Court, and his surname is Feraday:
Alan or Allen Feraday OBE (born 23 December 1937), former head of the Forensic Explosives Laboratory (FEL) at the Royal Armament Research and Development Establishment (RARDE) at Fort Halstead in Kent, is a self-professed forensic expert in electronics.
Although not so academically qualified, Allen Feraday was often addressed as ‘Dr’ or ‘Professor’ when he appeared as a time bomb expert witness in a number of high profile terrorist bombing cases including Danny McNamee (1982), John Berry (1983), Patrick Magee (1984), Hassan Assali (1985), the Gibraltar shootings (March 1988) and the Lockerbie bombing (December 1988).
Margaret Thatcher soon took an interest in Allen Feraday after his evidence in the 1986 Brighton bombing case where Patrick Magee was convicted, and was especially grateful for the exculpatory testimony Feraday gave at the "Death on the Rock" inquest in Gibraltar, when the SAS were alleged to have been operating a "shoot to kill" policy against three IRA bombers killed in March 1988.
Following the sabotage of Pan Am Flight 103 on 21 December 1988, the director of the Forensic Explosives Laboratory (FEL) Dr Thomas Hayes and his colleague Allen Feraday were tasked with the forensic investigation into the Lockerbie bombing, which was allocated the FEL case reference number PP8932. In the 1989 Queen's Birthday Honours list, Feraday was awarded an OBE and took over as head of the FEL when Hayes retired to become a chiropodist in the latter part of 1989. Two years later, Feraday and Dr Hayes (who continued with the Lockerbie investigation on a part-time basis) compiled a Joint Forensic Report into case PP8932. The JFR identified the only piece of hard evidence in the Lockerbie case, PT/35(b), a tiny fragment of printed circuit board that Feraday asserted had been the trigger for the Lockerbie bomb.
On 28 September 1993, Allen Feraday’s career prospects suddenly appeared to be in tatters when, in overturning John Berry's conviction, England's most senior judge, the Lord Chief Justice Lord Taylor of Gosforth, commented that although Feraday's views were "no doubt honestly held", his evidence had been expressed in terms that were "dogmatic in the extreme" and his conclusions were "uncompromising and incriminating". LCJ Taylor went even further saying that in future Feraday should not be allowed to present himself as an expert in the field of electronics. In 1995, Allen Feraday saw the writing on the wall and, aged 58, took early retirement after 25 years' service at the FEL when RARDE was subsumed into the less regal-sounding Defence Evaluation and Research Agency (DERA).
How come then the main prosecution 'expert' witness at the trial in June 2000 of Abdelbaset al-Megrahi – who was convicted in January 2001 of the Lockerbie bombing – was none other than Allen Feraday? The obvious answer is that Scots Law Professor Robert Black arranged for the Lockerbie trial to be held under Scottish Judges in the Netherlands, where Feraday's ban imposed by the now-deceased English Law Lord could safely be ignored.
Colin Boyd, Baron Boyd of Duncansby, was Lord Advocate for Scotland when the Lockerbie trial began in May 2000 so must have been fully aware that his star prosecution witness, Allen Feraday, had been banned from giving evidence by Lord Chief Justice Lord Taylor seven years earlier. It is interesting to note from Colin Boyd's Lockerbie Official Narrative that he credits Allen Feraday with identifying "a piece of circuitry no larger than a fingernail" as "identical to circuitry from an MST-13 timer." And that Feraday's June 1990 identification was made "with the assistance ultimately of the CIA and FBI."
However, the FBI's Tom Thurman has always maintained that he was the one who actually identified the MEBO timer fragment. So why wasn't Tom Thurman called as a prosecution witness? Well in 1997, as a result of a review by the US Inspector General, Michael Bromwich, Tom Thurman was barred from FBI scientific investigations and from being called as an expert witness. Bromwich had discovered that Thurman had no formal scientific qualifications and that he had been "circumventing procedures and protocols, testifying to areas of expertise that he had no qualifications in . . . therefore fabricating evidence." Not surprising therefore that Tom Thurman was not called to give evidence about the timer fragment at the Lockerbie trial at Camp Zeist.
In the 2009 documentary film "Lockerbie Revisited", which was broadcast in the Netherlands on the eve of Abdelbaset al-Megrahi's second appeal against conviction for the Lockerbie bombing that started at the High Court of Justiciary in Edinburgh on 28 April 2009, the FBI's Richard Marquise was asked "Would you have a case if you wouldn't have this [timer fragment] evidence?"
"Would we have a case...it would be a very difficult case to prove...this helps our link. Without the timer fragment we would have been unable to develop additional evidence against Libya. I don't think we would ever have had an indictment."
My recommendation, Mr Anwar, is that you appeal to the UK/Supreme Court to quash the Scottish Court in the Netherlands' 2001 conviction of Abdelbaset al-Megrahi on the basis of fabricated timer fragment evidence led by the "non-expert witness" Allen Feraday.
PS. Once the conviction is overturned and Justice for Megrahi is finally achieved, I should be most grateful if you would support my petition "Why doesn't Scotland Yard launch a Bernt Carlsson murder inquiry?"
- "Al-Megrahi family 'devastated' as Lockerbie appeal court judges uphold conviction"
- "Judges reject Lockerbie bomber family's bid to appeal to UK's highest court"
- "The Forensic Files (part 1)"
- "Allen W Feraday OBE"
- "'Gibraltar', a New Play: a Look at 'Death On The Rock' 25 Years On"
- "ORDER OF THE BRITISH EMPIRE (Civil Division) OFFICERS (OBE) Allen William Feraday, Principal Scientific Officer"
- "So could the Lockerbie bomber be freed next? These three men have had their convictions quashed. In each instance the same expert's testimony helped secure the prosecution's case, which was later challenged."
- "Law Report: Powers of appeal should be clarified: Regina v Berry - Court of Appeal (Criminal Division)(Lord Taylor of Gosforth, Lord Chief Justice, Mr Justice Otton and Mr Justice Kay), 28 September 1993"
- "'Doubts' over Lockerbie evidence"
- "Evidence that casts doubt on who brought down Flight 103"
- "R v Berry (No.3)  1 WLR 7"
- "Introducing Allen Feraday"
- "June 13th 2000 Testimony of Allen Feraday"
- "The Framing of al-Megrahi"
- "Extract from 2009 TV documentary 'Lockerbie Revisited'"