Shayler was right over bomb at Israeli embassy

Click to follow
The Independent Online

The Crown Prosecution Service was forced by the Court of Appeal yesterday to admit that the former MI5 officer, David Shayler, was right in saying that the security services were warned before the 1994 car bombing of the Israeli embassy in London that the building was being targeted by a terrorist organisation.

The Crown Prosecution Service was forced by the Court of Appeal yesterday to admit that the former MI5 officer, David Shayler, was right in saying that the security services were warned before the 1994 car bombing of the Israeli embassy in London that the building was being targeted by a terrorist organisation.

The terrorist group was unconnected with the two young Palestinians eventually convicted of the bombing, it was revealed following a disclosure order made by three appeal judges. But the Crown insisted that, according to intelligence received by MI5 and Scotland Yard Special Branch after the blast, the terrorist organisation did not in fact carry out the attack.

Shayler has claimed that MI5 was warned in advance that an attack on the embassy was imminent, but the information was shelved and nothing was done.

He also referred to suspicions that the Israeli secret service, Mossad, carried out the bombing to provoke the UK into tightening its security.

Yesterday, Michael Mansfield QC, for convicted Palestinians Jawad Botmeh, 31, and Samar Alami, 33, accused the prosecution of "deliberate non-disclosure" of crucial information which could have led to a not guilty verdict at their trial.

Crown counsel Julian Bevan QC replied that the prosecution was not in possession of any material which cast doubt on the conviction of the pair - otherwise he would have disclosed it to the court.

Yesterday's disclosure order was made by Lord Justice Rose, Mr Justice Hooper and Mr Justice Goldring following a private hearing, attended only by Crown lawyers, to review "public interest immunity" certificates signed by the Home Secretary, Jack Straw, in relation to intelligence agency information which the defence team believe could be vital to their appeal case.

The hearing continues today.