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UK family murderer grasps at legal straw

Publish date: 30 March 2012
Issue Number: 3006
Diary: Legalbrief Today
Category: Criminal

Jeremy Bamber, jailed for 26 years for killing five members of his own family, is launching another bid for freedom after evidence emerged that the Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions decided not to proceed with drug trafficking and fraud allegations against a key prosecution witness.

A report in The Guardian notes that his legal team is expected to argue that this raises the possibility that she was induced to give evidence against Bamber in return for the allegations being abandoned. Bamber, now 51, was found guilty in October 1986 of shooting his adoptive parents, June and Nevill, his sister Sheila Caffell and her six-year-old twins, Daniel and Nicholas, at their Essex farmhouse. He has always maintained his innocence. The prosecution witness Julie Mugford was Bamber's girlfriend in the run-up to the killings. Her evidence was crucial to the prosecution's case. Now Bamber's lawyers have discovered Mugford testified against him after police decided to drop investigations into criminal offences she had allegedly committed before the trial. Documents only recently disclosed to Bamber detail how Mugford was accused of burglary, smuggling cannabis into the UK from Canada and cheque fraud. Bamber's lawyers have sent the new evidence to the Criminal Cases Review Commission in an attempt to get his case back to the Court of Appeal for a third time, says the report. Full report in The Guardian