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Survivor of Kegworth air disaster to be prosecuted for sex assault

By Paul Higgins

Published 04/05/2016

Case: Chris Thompson
Case: Chris Thompson

A survivor of the Kegworth air disaster is to be prosecuted for sexual assault despite a report casting doubt on his "state of mind," a defence barrister has revealed.

Chris Holmes told Newtownards Magistrates' Court he had a report from consultant forensic psychiatrist Professor Ian Bownes about 58-year-old Chris Thompson which "raises an issue about the defendant's state of mind at the time of the incident".

The defence solicitor said: "I believe there is a decision to proceed in spite of that report."

Thompson, from the Warren Road in Donaghadee, faces two charges of sexual assault against one woman on a date unknown between 10-14 August last year.

A PPS solicitor confirmed the case is to proceed and it would take two or more weeks to fix a date.

Adjourning the case to May 24 so that witness availability can be ascertained, District Judge Mark Hamill asked rhetorically: "If they agree that this man cannot form mens rea what are the legal implications?"

In 1989, 47 people were killed and many more injured when a British Midland Boeing 737 lost both engines and crashed on the M1 at Kegworth.

Thompson was one of the 112 passengers and he couldn't walk for a year after both his legs were shattered in the crash.

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