Detectives 'fabricated Silcott evidence': Notes were altered after interview with Blakelock murder suspect, court told

TWO DETECTIVES investigating the murder of PC Keith Blakelock during the Broadwater Farm riot fabricated evidence which was crucial in wrongly convicting Winston Silcott, the Old Bailey was told yesterday.

A written account of an interview with Silcott, supposed to be a contemporaneous note, was later altered to include damaging comments which he had not made and was used as evidence against him at the Old Bailey in 1987.

Yesterday the two officers principally responsible for Silcott's conviction, which was quashed by the Court of Appeal in 1991, were themselves in the dock.

Detective Chief Superintendent Graham Melvin, 52, and Detective Inspector Maxwell Dingle, 57, are pleading not guilty to conspiracy to pervert the course of public justice. Det Chief Supt Melvin also denies perjury.

David Calvert-Smith, for the prosecution, told the court that in October 1985 there had been a riot on the Broadwater Farm Estate in north London, during which PC Blakelock had been brutally murdered.

Det Chief Supt Melvin and Det Insp Dingle were called in to investigate the murder. Six days after the riot Silcott was arrested and was interviewed five times during the next 24 hours, Det Chief Supt Melvin asking the questions and Det Insp Dingle making the notes.

During the first four interviews Silcott refused to answer most questions or sign the notes. But the police account of the fifth interview was very different.

According to the note, Det Chief Supt Melvin said to Silcott that he was one of those standing over PC Blakelock and struck him with either a machete or a sword- type weapon. Silcott allegedly replied: 'Who told you that?'

When told that police had information that he had been actively involved in the murder Silcott was said to have answered: 'They are only kids. No one is going to believe them.'

He was said to have paced around, sworn, cried and said 'Jesus, Jesus' before telling the detectives:'You ain't got enough evidence. Those kids will never go to court, you wait and see.'

Mr Calvert-Smith said: 'There appears on the face of it to have been a distinct change in the attitude of Mr Silcott.

'The Crown's contention is that these pages were fabricated. They were not what Mr Silcott had to say at all, they were written after the event in order to make a stronger case against him.'

Both defendants made statements declaring that the notes of the interviews were true and Det Chief Supt Melvin gave evidence at Silcott's trial that they had been made at the time.

Four years later the notes were examined by experts using a technique called ESDA (Electrostatic Deposition/Detection Analysis) which detects a small electrostatic charge left on a page when someone writes on the sheet above it.

On pages three to six of the note of the fifth interview there were no impressions from earlier pages which there were throughout the rest of the series. The forms on which they were written were a different type of paper from the rest of the report.

The analysis also revealed an imprint of a different page five from the one submitted in evidence which was clearly the same interview with Silcott but in which he made no implicit admissions.

Laser tests showed the imprint of another officer's endorsement on the back of one of the allegedly false pages. The officer had to sign the notes because Silcott would not do so, but the imprint showed that the page had been written after he had approved the document.

The case continues today.

(Photographs omitted)

News
people Biographer says cinema’s enduring sex symbol led a secret troubled life
News
newsGlobal index has ranked the quality of life for OAPs - but the UK didn't even make it into the top 10
News
people

Kirstie Allsopp has waded into the female fertility debate again

News
In 2006, Pluto was reclassified as a 'dwarf planet'
scienceBut will it be reinstated?
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
News
people
News
Researchers say a diet of fatty foods could impede smell abilities
scienceMeasuring the sense may predict a person's lifespan
Sport
footballArsenal 4 Galatasaray 1: Wenger celebrates 18th anniversary in style
News
peopleStella McCartney apologises over controversial Instagram picture
News
Gillian Anderson was paid less than her male co-star David Duchovny for three years while she was in the The X-Files until she protested and was given the same salary
people

Gillian Anderson lays into gender disparity in Hollywood

Life and Style
Laid bare: the Good2Go app ensures people have a chance to make their intentions clear about having sex
techCould Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?
Arts and Entertainment
Richard Burr remains the baker to beat on the Great British Bake Off
tvRichard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
Life and Style
fashionThe Secret Angels all take home huge sums - but who earns the most?
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Amazon has added a cautionary warning to Tom and Jerry cartoons on its streaming service
tv
News
The village was originally named Llansanffraid-ym-Mechain after the Celtic female Saint Brigit, but the name was changed 150 years ago to Llansantffraid – a decision which suggests the incorrect gender of the saint
newsA Welsh town has changed its name - and a prize if you can notice how
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

KS1 and KS2 Primary NQT Job in Lancaster Area

£85 - £140 per day: Randstad Education Preston: Randstad Education is urgently...

DT Teacher - Resistant Materials

£33000 - £34000 per annum: Randstad Education Group: Technology Teacher (Resis...

Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + Uncapped Commission, 1st yr OTE £30-£40k : SThree:...

Middleware Support Analyst

£45000 - £50000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client is curr...

Day In a Page

Italian couples fake UK divorce scam on an ‘industrial scale’

Welcome to Maidenhead, the divorce capital of... Italy

A look at the the legal tourists who exploited our liberal dissolution rules
Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

The vintage series has often been criticised for racial stereotyping
An app for the amorous: Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?

An app for the amorous

Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?
Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid. Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?

Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid

Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

After a few early missteps with Chekhov, her acting career has taken her to Hollywood. Next up is a role in the BBC’s gangster drama ‘Peaky Blinders’
She's having a laugh: Britain's female comedians have never had it so good

She's having a laugh

Britain's female comedians have never had it so good, says stand-up Natalie Haynes
Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LED lights designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows

Let there be light

Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LEDs designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows
Great British Bake Off, semi-final, review: Richard remains the baker to beat

Tensions rise in Bake Off's pastry week

Richard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
Paris Fashion Week, spring/summer 2015: Time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris

A look to the future

It's time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris
The 10 best bedspreads

The 10 best bedspreads

Before you up the tog count on your duvet, add an extra layer and a room-changing piece to your bed this autumn
Arsenal vs Galatasaray: Five things we learnt from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Galatasaray

Five things we learnt from the Gunners' Champions League victory at the Emirates
Stuart Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

This deal gives England a head-start to prepare for 2019 World Cup, says Chris Hewett
Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
The magic of roundabouts

Lords of the rings

Just who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?