Campaigners welcome new Hillsborough inquest
Thursday 20 December 2012
Hillsborough campaigners welcomed the news of a new inquest into the deaths of 96 Liverpool fans, saying: “Justice is on its way.”
On the same day a new police inquiry into the disaster was announced, the fight for the truth took a historic step forward when a panel of three High Court judges, headed by the Lord Chief Justice Lord Judge, quashed the original accidental death verdicts - and ordered a fresh inquest.
Trevor Hicks, chair of the Hillsborough Family Support Group, spoke of his delight at the High Court's decision, saying: "Justice is on its way. Everything we've said has been proven to be correct."
The unopposed, "exceptional" application to the court was made by the Government's top law officer, Attorney General Dominic Grieve.
It follows the publication in September of a damning report laying bare a cover-up which attempted to shift the blame for the tragedy onto its victims.
The Liverpool supporters died during a crush at Sheffield Wednesday's Hillsborough stadium on April 15, 1989, where their team faced Nottingham Forest in an FA Cup semi-final.
Yesterday, the High Court judges ruled that it was "necessary, desirable and in the interests of justice" that a fresh inquest should be held.
Their decision came as a new police investigation into the disaster was announced by Home Secretary Theresa May.
Former Durham Chief Constable Jon Stoddart will lead the new inquiry.
The Home Secretary said: "I am determined to see a swift and thorough response to the findings of the Hillsborough Panel to deliver justice for the 96 football fans who died and the families who have fought so hard on their behalf."
Following the High Court's decision, Lord Chancellor Chris Grayling said: "The victims' families and survivors of the Hillsborough tragedy have seen their cause take another important step forward today.
"I will now do everything I can to help to get new inquests established quickly.
"I have received a request from the Doncaster and Bradford coroners for a judge to be appointed to conduct these inquests and I am today asking the Lord Chief Justice to make a recommendation to me on suitable candidates as soon as possible."
The main plank of the Attorney General's application related to crucial new medical evidence.
Welcoming the decision, Mr Grieve said: "The interests of justice require the 96 inquests to be quashed and for new ones to be held."
He added: "The families' long and painful quest for the truth reached a breakthrough with the publication of the Hillsborough Independent Panel report.
"I hope and trust that new inquests will provide a better understanding of how each of their loved ones died, and bring closer the justice for which they have fought so hard."
Latest in Sport
Don't mess with me, Diego Costa warns Manchester City ahead of Chelsea clash
Florida State quarter-back Jameis Winston suspended for half-a-game for yelling 'F*** her right in the p****'
West Ham vs Liverpool match report: Reds are caught cold by hot Hammers
Aston Villa vs Arsenal team news: Alexis Sanchez incorrectly named in starting line-up as Alex Oxlade-Chamerlain called up to start
West Ham vs Liverpool player ratings: Winston Reid? Diafra Sakho? Who rated highest from the Hammers' victory?
- 1 Scottish referendum: So how about the English now being given a chance to split from England?
- 4 Matthew Miller: American sentenced to hard labour in North Korea 'wanted to be Snowden II'
- 5 Iranian blogger found guilty of insulting Prophet Mohammad on Facebook sentenced to death
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Scottish referendum results: Cross-party consensus collapses amid Tory-Labour spat on the 'English question'
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
Archbishop of Canterbury admits doubts about existence of God
Portuguese academic says British are 'filthy, violent and drunk'