Thursday, 11 October 2007

Six years of my life taken by injustice in the Scottish Courts

After 25 years of fighting the injustice of being framed by Lothian & Borders Police, for a crime I did not commit, I'm still battling against the lack of transparency & accountability in the Scots justice system to have a fair hearing.

Here is my story from the News of the World:


News of the World November 16 2003

I was robbed of 6 yrs of my life



A Scots dad claims he lost six years of his life after being wrongly jailed for a vicious armed robbery.

William beck has spent 21 years trying to clear his name after accusing his legal team of failing to spot he was being framed.

The dad-of-two maintains he was mistakenly convicted of a violent raid on a post van.

He's now handed his case dossier to the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission, which probes miscarriages of justice.

And the 42-year-old from Glasgow, blasted: "I've been stitched up and now I want something done about it"

Jobless William claims cops investigating the original crime :

ONLY arrested him because he was a petty thief

TOLD vital witnesses to keep quiet

INFORMED the cast-iron alibi he gave them, and

HANDED round a snap of him before a crucial identity parade.

His nightmare began in December 1981 when raiders attacked two Post Office workers with hammers escaping with 21,000 pounds.

William was arrested four days later.

He told us "The cops needed to get somebody and I was an easy target as I had previous convictions for stealing motors.

"But I'm not a violent guy - I had no record for assault at all"

He said one witness told cops the robber was aged around 40 and had a moustache.

But in the ID parade, the man picked clean-shaven William, then 20.

He blasted : "The people who witnessed the raid were supposed to come along and point out the guy responsible.

"But before the parade, officers showed them a photograph of me and said , "This is the man we have in custody"

"How can you then rely upon their evidence ?".

William originally told officers he'd been talking to a mobile grocer called Robert Hamilton outside his Glasgow home at the time of the raid.

But cops said Hamilton refused to confirm it.

And when the case came to trial at the High Court in Edinburgh the following March, William's legal team did not query their claim.

He was then sentenced to six years in prison.

He told us "I was absolutely horrified"

"I can remember being dragged away kicking and screaming.

"I was really angry at my defence team, which had been led by QC Bill Taylor - he also represented Lockerbie bomber Aldelbaset Al-Megrahi.

"I had witnesses who would have put me in the clear but Taylor didn't call them"

In prison, William continued to maintain his innocence and even REFUSED parole - since he believed accepting it would be an admission of guilt.

And on his release in 1988, he began working to clear his name, swotting up on Scots Law and reviewing the evidence.

in 1993, he visited Hamilton and was shocked when the grocer told him he'd been warred by the cops to keep quiet.

William told us "I am really angry about it - this has ruined my life"

A SCCRC spokesman said last night "We are considering this case"

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