Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 21 October 2014

Birmingham Six book condemned

By Marie Foy

Gareth Peirce slated author Sir Louis Blom- Cooper QC, accusing him of Òwriting garbageÓ and slip-slap research.

Gareth Peirce slated author Sir Louis Blom- Cooper QC, accusing him of Òwriting garbageÓ and slip-slap research.

The Birmingham Six were jailed for the 1974 bombing of two pubs in the city which claimed the lives of 21 people. They were later freed after a second appeal.

In his book ÒThe Birmingham Six and Other CasesÓ, Sir Louis said he was uncertain whether the men were innocent or guilty.

In an interview with The Guardian newspaper yesterday, Sir Louis said when the Court of Appeal overturned a conviction, it did not mean the defendants were innocent.

He also wanted to dispel the misconception circumstantial evidence was weaker than direct evidence.

The menÕs solicitor Ms Peirce said: ÒIt is quite clear the book says the men are guilty and it means they have to spend their entire lives defending themselves against this sort of garbage.ÓShe pointed out that there was a wealth of new evidence that was never presented to the second appeal because the Crown had conceded the case.

Ms Peirce, who is considering an action for defamation, also challenged suggestions by Sir Louis that the men did not suffer from brutality at the hands of the police when they made their confessions.

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