A man who has spent nearly 15 years in jail for the brutal rape of a student nurse was cleared and freed today after the Court of Appeal held that the crime "almost certainly never happened at all".
Roy Burnett, 56, a gardener from Bromley, Kent, was jailed for life at the Old Bailey in 1986 after a jury accepted evidence from the 20-year-old nurse that she had been raped and seriously assaulted.
Burnett refused to admit his guilt, but had no grounds for an appeal until 1998 when the same woman made a false complaint of rape to Devon police.
The Metropolitan Police were informed and Burnett's case was re-opened.
But for the action of the police, he "might have continued to be incarcerated for many years yet", said appeal judge Lord Justice Judge today.Reuse content