Ice-cream wars confession 'unreliable'
Two men jailed for life for murdering six members of a family in the notorious "ice-cream wars" in Glasgow launched a fresh appeal to clear their names yesterday.
Thomas "T C" Campbell and Joe Steele were convicted in 1984 of starting a fire that swept through a flat and killed six members of the Doyle family, including an 18-month-old baby.
Lawyers representing the men presented evidence to the Court of Appeal in Edinburgh suggesting that the testimony of four police officers who recorded an identical "confession" by Campbell was unreliable. A language expert said that it was "improbable" that four people would record identical words.
Since the convictions, the case has become one of the most contentious in Scottish legal history, with allegations that the police fabricated evidence against the two men.
The killings took place against a background of a battle for control of the city's ice-cream business. The turf war was said to be connected with a lucrative trade in distributing drugs and stolen goods in the East End of Glasgow.
One van driver, Andrew "Fat Boy" Doyle, 18, refused to be intimidated into giving up his route. In February 1984, two shots were fired through the windscreen of his van while he was trading from it. About six weeks later, the fatal fire was started at the door of his home in the Ruchazie district of Glasgow.
Campbell and Steele were each convicted of murder on a jury's unanimous verdict. Campbell was also convicted, again unanimously, of involvement in the earlier shotgun attack on Mr Doyle in his van, and received a 10-year sentence.
Two previous appeals have failed, but the case has come before appeal judges again as a result of a referral by the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission.
The central issue of the fresh appeal is the words said to have been spoken by Campbell and recorded by four officers. The alleged killer is alleged to have said: "There was a fire at Fat Boy's" and ended with the words: "It was only meant to be a frightener, which went too far."
The hearing continues.
Mystery man who gave mum heart-warming note on train 'wanted to put a smile on her face'
Michelle Obama highlights harsh restrictions faced by Saudi women after meeting King Salman without wearing a headscarf
Mafia's wall of silence broken: Victim of Cosa Nostra's extortion rackets in its Corleone heartland co-operates with authorities for the first time ever
Amal Clooney gives excellent answer to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
Sir David Attenborough interview: The one question about life that still baffles him
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
Louise Mensch says 'F**K YOU' in explosive tweets about David Cameron, Saudi Embassy and the Queen over King Abdullah tributes
- 1 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 2 Mystery man who gave mum heart-warming note on train 'wanted to put a smile on her face'
- 3 Michelle Obama highlights harsh restrictions faced by Saudi women after meeting King Salman without wearing a headscarf
- 4 Mafia's wall of silence broken: Victim of Cosa Nostra's extortion rackets in its Corleone heartland co-operates with authorities for the first time ever
- 5 Amal Clooney gives excellent answer to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights