CCRC Refer Second Martin Foran Conviction to Court of Appeal
Martin Foran, 69, who is terminally ill with cancer, was convicted of robbery in 1978 – a crime he denies. The Court of Appeal will rule on that conviction after a referral by the Criminal Case Review Commission (CCRC). A second 1985 conviction of robbing a Birmingham pub was declared unsafe by the appeal court in April 2013.
Mr Foran, who has never stopped fighting being ‘Fitted up’ by the West Midlands Serious Crime Squad, said he was “very pleased”. He served six years of a 10-year sentence for four counts of robbery. “If it is successful, it will go down in history as a double miscarriage of justice, but I will have to wait and see,” he added. “It has been a long, hard battle to get to this point and I have waited 38 years.”
Although he is dying, Mr Foran said he was determined to “hang in there” for justice. “I won’t give up,” he added. He told the BBC his dying wish was to go to his grave an innocent man.
The CCRC said it referred his 1978 case to the Court of Appeal because it “considers that new evidence raises a real possibility that the court will now quash those convictions”. The commission’s referral is based upon evidence relating to the credibility of officers of the West Midlands Police Serious Crime Squad, who were involved in the case against Mr Foran.”
The West Midlands Serious Crime Squad was a police unit in the West Midlands which operated from 1974 to 1989. It was disbanded after an investigation into allegations against some of its officers of incompetence and abuses of power. Although numerous officers were found to have fitted up many of those they had arrested, not one of them ever spent a minute in prison. 62 known Miscarriages of Justice were later overturned on appeal, including the cases of the Birmingham Six, Bridgewater Four.
BBC News, 13 January 2014