Coroner's jail death ruling challenged

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The Independent Online
(First Edition)

LAWYERS for the family of a Zairean asylum-seeker who died in a struggle with warders at Pentonville prison in London are to ask the High Court to overturn a coroner's decision that a verdict of unlawful killing was not open to the inquest jury because there was no conclusive cause of death.

The St Pancras coroner, Douglas Chambers, yesterday agreed to adjourn the inquest on Omasase Lumumba, 32, so his family could seek judicial review of the decision. Mr Lumumba died in October 1991 while being held down by six prison officers in the segregation block. An inmate told the inquest that he saw the officers jumping on the deceased's back, a claim they rejected.