Jean Charles de Menezes

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Person.png Jean Charles de Menezes History CommonsRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
Jean Charles de Menezes.jpg
Died22 July 2005
Victim ofmurder
Shot dead by UK police 2 weeks after the 7-7 bombings. Police originally lied about the circumstances, and might never have admitted the truth if Lana Vandenberghe had not blown the whistle and revealed the real chain of events.
The coverpage of UK's Daily Express from 23 July, 2005, the day after de Menezes was killed by the Metropolitan Police. The Express labeled him a "terrorist".

Jean Charles de Menezes was an electrician shot dead by the London Metropolitan police at Stockwell tube station on the London Underground a day after a bomb plot was reported and two weeks after the London Bombings of July 2005. The circumstances of his killing emerged only after Lana Vandenberghe, who worked for the IPCC, leaked internal documents to the commercially-controlled media. Undercover police then collected information about his family.[1]

Official Narrative

"Five and a half hours after the shooting Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Ian Blair issued a statement in which he claimed that the operation had been “directly linked” to ongoing investigations into the attempted bombings in central London the previous day. At that time, Ian Blair announced that the person shot dead at Stockwell had been acting suspiciously and was challenged by police but refused to obey instructions."[2]

Blair's statement could have been designed to minimize public outrage at the man's killing. Lana Vandenberghe, an IPCC administrator, was outraged by it's departure from the fact of the case and blew the whistle. She was sacked for her honesty while those who created the original narrative have never been even publicly identified.

The police gunmen, identified only as C11 and C12, "claimed they had shouted warnings of "armed police!" several times, and that de Menezes then stood up and walked towards them, leading them to shoot him dead. Witnesses said that no warnings were shouted, and that de Menezes did not stand up."[3]

Original Narrative 1.0

The Metropolitan police claimed that de Menezes was wearing a bulky coat that could have concealed explosives, vaulted over a ticket barrier and run down an escalator to escape firearms officers. A government spokesman boasted that "the police and emergency services have acted superbly".[4] On the day after de Menezes was killed, the Daily Express quoted Patrick Mercer ("Tory homeland security spokesman") as saying that "If this is what it takes then so be it. I am very pleased that the police were willing to engage their target."

Original Narrative 2.0

After a leak by Lana Vandenberghe, the first story was exposed as a falsehood, so the official narrative was changed to state that he walked through the station quite normally and used an Oystercard to get through the barrier[3], stopping to pick up a copy of the free London newspaper Metro on his way. The "Independent Police Complaints Commission" concluded that de Menezes was misidentified as a fugitive associated with the bombs left on the tube the previous day's failed bombing attempts.[5]


Full article: Lana Vandenberghe

The true circumstances of the killing of de Menezes may never have been revealed to the public had not whistleblower Lana Vandenberghe exposed as a lie the original version of events released by police, viz. that de Menezes, wearing a bulky coat, had vaulted over a ticket barrier and run down an escalator to escape firearms officers. An administration secretary for the IPCC, Vandenberghe was arrested and lost her job as a result.[6][7]

Cover up

After the killing, Ian Blair, the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis‎ telephoned the Chairman of the Independent Police Complaints Commission and wrote a letter to the Home Office stating that "the shooting that has just occurred at Stockwell is not to be referred to the IPCC and that they will be given no access to the scene at the present time".[8]

Police Surveillance

After the shooting of Mr. de Menezes, his family campaigned for "justice", and the Met kept them under extended surveillance. A spokesperson for the De Menezes Family Campaign said: "It is shameful that the Metropolitan police spied on the legitimate campaign activities of a grieving family who were simply trying to get the answers they deserved after their loved one was killed by police officers." The police offered no explanation of their continued surveillance, leading The Guardian to assume that "they were gathering information in an attempt to discredit the family's campaign for justice in order to deflect accountability for their own failings.[1]

Misleading Wikipedia edits

Channel 4 claimed that UK government computers were used to add misleading and incorrect data to the Wikipedia page documenting Jean Charles de Menezes’ death, so as to obscure police failings. Asad Rehman, speaking on behalf of the De Menezes family, emphasized it wasn’t the first time they’d been targeted in such a manner, stating that "Like all ordinary members of the public, I'm shocked. This is yet one more smear and attack on the family. We've seen over many years lies, misinformation and smears during the family's attempt to find the truth and justice and answers about how an innocent young man on his way to work was gunned down by police officers."[9]


Related Quotation

Lana Vandenberghe“The full circumstances of the shooting of Jean Charles de Menezes by the Metropolitan Police SO19 Firearms Unit on 22 July 2005 would not have come to the public's attention without the revelations of Lana Vandenbergh. Lana worked as an administration secretary for the Independent Police Complaints Commission. Jean Charles de Menezes, an innocent man, was shot and killed at Stockwell tube station on the London Underground by police. Initially, police falsely claimed that he was wearing bulky clothing, had vaulted the ticket barriers and run from police. It soon become clear that de Menezes did not vault and run from the police, but police did not correct the misinformation until the correct information was leaked to the press. At first the police tried to cover up this dreadful mistake. Vandenbergh leaked details of the police enquiry, which was very different from the version then in the public domain.”Lana Vandenberghe


Related Document

TitleTypePublication dateAuthor(s)Description
File:02 08 07 ipcc stockwell.pdfreportJuly 2007Stockwell two, the second report into the handling and dissemination of information by the Metropolitan Police Service to the Press, following the killing of Jean Charles de Menezes.
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