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#310221 - 17th Apr 2009 3:55pm Hillsborough documents they want to see

Hillsborough families reveal which top-secret documents they want to see

HILLSBOROUGH families today revealed which top-secret documents they want making public in the fight for justice.

Their call came as prime minister Gordon Brown agreed to hold another cabinet-level discussion, where ministers will decide whether a fresh inquiry into the 1989 tragedy is justified.

Culture secretary Andy Burnham, who was barracked at Wednesday’s 20th anniversary memorial service, yesterday told Mr Brown there cannot be “closure” until all relevant documents are made public.

Solicitor Ann Adlington, who spearheaded the private prosecution against two South Yorkshire Police officers, named certain information she is particularly keen to see.

They include files on the criminal investigation undertaken by West Midlands Police on behalf of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) in 1989-90.

Mrs Adlington told the ECHO: “Those documents make it clear Liverpool supporters were being criminally investigated for causing the disaster.

“The file has never seen the light of day.

“Years later, when the Hillsborough Family Support Group started its private prosecution of Chief Superintendent David Duckenfield and Superintendent Bernard Murray, we were doing their job for them.

“It would be interesting to read the interviews done with those officers.”

After reviewing the evidence, the DPP decided there was insufficient evidence to launch a prosecution.

The Hillsborough families are also keen to study statements taken from ambulance drivers that day.

Only one professional paramedic, Tony Edwards, of Norris Green, made it onto the pitch as 44 ambulance remained queued up in a long line outside the ground.

Police stopped medical teams from driving onto the pitch after wrongly informing them fans were fighting.

Mr Edwards was stunned when he was not interviewed as part of the Taylor report.

Mrs Adlington said interviews undertaken with staff at Sheffield Wednesday FC, pertaining to a possible health and safety or corporate manslaughter prosecution of the club, were also of interest.

Yesterday, Mr Burnham raised the issue of suspending the 30-year secrecy rule covering police logs and Home Office dossiers at a cabinet meeting.

He said: “Attitudes are changing and people across the country can now see more clearly the level of injustice the Hillsborough families suffered.

“I will do all I can to get full disclosure for the sake of the victims and their families.”


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#310771 - 19th Apr 2009 12:25pm Re: Hillsborough documents they want to see [Re: ]
MissGuided Offline

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Registered: 18th Jul 2008
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Hillsborough files may be opened

Secret files on the Hillsborough disaster could be made public 10 years early after a request from the home secretary.

Jacqui Smith has asked South Yorkshire Police to release the documents, which contain detailed evidence of what happened during the tragedy in 1989.

It could help families of the 96 victims who want a new inquiry.

Ms Smith has met South Yorkshire Chief Constable Meredydd Hughes to discuss the records.

BBC Report

#311073 - 20th Apr 2009 10:24pm Re: Hillsborough documents they want to see [Re: MissGuided]

PRESSURE was mounting on South Yorkshire Police today to release secret files on the Hillsborough disaster.

It comes after home secretary Jacqui Smith called for documents to be made available a decade before the usual 30-year disclosure rule.

The breakthrough was given a cautious welcome from families of the 96 Liverpool fans killed in the tragedy.

Hillsborough Family Support Group (HFSG) president Trevor Hicks described it as “a little late, but welcome”.

The businessman, who lost his two teenage daughters Vicki, 15, and Sarah, 19, on the Leppings Lane terrace, said he would be seeking personal assurances files had not been “sanitised” or altered.

And he said the families should be given time to study the documents - possibly by setting up a “Truth Commission” - before they were put on general release.

Sheila Coleman, of the Hillsborough Justice Campaign, said: “There has been a History of cover-ups about Hillsborough so this News has to be preceded with caution.

“I would still call for an independent enquiry.

“If files are released I’d painstakingly go through everything.

“Now there is movement and I think the shift in attitude is in response to the constant pressure by Liverpool supporters at games with their badges and banners.

“These people have a strong sense of truth and in this day and age that’s very heartening.”

A Whitehall source said: “It is still up to the police to make the documents public.

“But this message from Jacqui Smith carries a lot of weight.”

If the files are made public Hillsborough families want answers about:

the controversial 3.15pm cut-off time

the changing of 180 police statements

who orchestrated the alleged “cover-up”the meeting headed by prime minister Margaret Thatcher on the day after the disaster during which instructions were allegedly given stating “the police are not to be blamed”.
Mr Hicks added: “I think Andy Burnham is to be congratulated for delivering on this.

“This is as a result of the tremendous response at the anniversary service last Wednesday.

“At long last the government has finally realised that the only way to get closure is to come clean.

It’s like opening Pandora’s Box - until you open it, you don’t know what’s there.

“We are not looking for anyone to be hanged.

“But if there is evidence that shows culpability we expect those people to be dealt with properly.

“All we want is the truth, whatever the truth is.

“I lost Sarah and Vicki and as a father I am perfectly entitled to know the full facts about their death and what happened afterwards.

“This could take weeks, months or even years.

“But we’ve been waiting for 20 years so what’s a little bit longer?”

At the 20th memorial service on Wednesday secretary of state for culture, media and sport Andy Burnham was heckled as he gave a speech in front of the Kop.

He was forced to stop as chants of Justice for the 96 rained down from the stand.

The MP was seen to nod in agreement. And later in Liverpool town hall the minister said he entirely understood the sentiments of Liverpool families and fans.

In a Home Office statement Jacqui Smith said: “The government is committed to helping those who lost loved ones in the Hillsborough tragedy.

“That is why I will be working with colleagues in the Ministry of Justice, the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and the Attorney General’s Office to put out any information that exists that could shed light on the disaster and its aftermath in the public domain as soon as possible.”


Edited by _jase_ (20th Apr 2009 10:30pm)

#311074 - 20th Apr 2009 10:27pm Re: Hillsborough documents they want to see [Re: ]

Culture Secretary Andy Burnham was booed at Anfield as he spoke in front of the thousands of people who gathered to mark the 20th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster. Sections of the crowd chanted and booed when he mentioned the Government's response to the tragedy. Many in Merseyside are still angry that no one has been held responsible for the deaths of 96 Liverpool supporters died in the crush at Sheffield Wednesday's Hillsborough Stadium on April 15, 1989


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