UK High Court Refuses Appeal of Lockerbie Bomber’s Family

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The son of Abdel-Basit Al-Megrahi, who was accused of carrying out the 1988 Lockerbie bombing is “deeply disappointed,” that UK High Court judges have refused permission to launch an appeal in the case, according to The National.

Lawyers for the family had been seeking to overturn a ruling by the High Court.

The deadly attack on Pan Am Flight 103 from London to New York killed 270 people, including 190 Americans. Of those who died, 35 were study-abroad students who were returning home for Christmas, while 11 were killed on the ground in the Scottish town of Lockerbie.

Former Libyan intelligence officer, Abdel-Basit Al-Megrahi was found guilty in 2001 of mass murder and jailed for life with a minimum term of 27 years.

In January 2021, Al-Megrahi’s son, Ali, lost an appeal against his late father’s conviction.

The High Court ruled that permission to appeal against that decision should be refused. It said the “application does not raise an arguable point of law”.

Lawyer Aamer Anwar, representing the family insisted this was not the end of the matter, as he would take the case back to the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission (SCCRC) and “continue to pursue an appeal”.

“I spoke today to Ali, the son of the late Al-Megrahi, and he said he was deeply disappointed in the decision of the UK Supreme Court. Ali told me he was eight years old when his father went to the Netherlands to stand trial. When his father returned to Libya to die, Ali spent most of his time next to his father and said that until his dying breath he maintained his innocence,” Anwar said.

“The Al-Megrahi’s regard their father as the 271st victim of Lockerbie,” the lawyer said.

Abdel-Basit was released from prison in Scotland in 2009 on compassionate grounds, after being diagnosed with terminal prostate cancer. He died in Libya in 2012.

“For my legal team it has been eight long year’s, but for the families we represent it has been 33 long years of struggle for truth and justice. Sadly that struggle is not over,” Anwar added.

Libya accepted responsibility for the bombing in 2003, and subsequently paid compensation to the victim’s families.