Call for new inquest to be held into the death of six Redcaps in Iraq

Ben Hyde - lawyers call for a new inquest.

Ben Hyde - lawyers call for a new inquest.

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Darlington and Stockton Times: Photograph of the Author by

LAWYERS are pressing for a new inquest to be held into the deaths of a group of military policemen who were murdered by a mob in Iraq nearly 11 years ago.

They want to see the original narrative verdict of unlawful killing quashed to allow new evidence that has since emerged to be heard.

And they have written to Attorney General Dominic Grieve saying the move is necessary in the interests of justice.

The lawyers are acting for the families of four of the dead soldiers – including Lance Corporal Ben Hyde from Northallerton and Corporal Simon Miller from Washington, Tyne and Wear.

They were among six Redcaps killed in June 2003 when they were cornered by a mob at a police station in the town of Majar al Kabir. Their killers have never been brought to justice.

An inquest was held in March 2006 at which various criticisms were made of the Ministry of Defence.

The families, including L/Cpl Hyde’s father John, have since been pressing for a public inquiry into the entire incident but so far to no avail.

The original inquest concluded the soldiers’ time of death was between 10.30am and 11am, however it has since emerged the inquest did not hear evidence from an interpreter which suggested the Redcaps could have been alive up to midday.

And in his letter to the Attorney General solicitor Simon McKay claimed the time of death was critical in relation to the hearing.

“It had particular significance in this case because the coroner relied on the time of death at 11am as a basis for concluding that there was nothing that could have been done to prevent the murders of the Redcaps,” he wrote.

A Ministry of Defence spokesman said that it was not up to them to question the inquest's findings.

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