Thursday, July 30, 1998 Published at 10:22 GMT 11:22 UK
Derek Bentley conviction quashed after 45 years
A British court has overturned the conviction of a teenager who was hanged in 1953 for murdering a policeman -- ending a forty-five year campaign by his family to clear his name, during which the case has persisently evoked public concern.
The Court of Appeal in London said the conviction of the teenager, Derek Bentley, was unsafe.
The policeman was shot while Mr Bentley -- nineteen when he was hanged -- was breaking into a warehouse with an accomplice, Christopher Craig.
It was Mr Craig who fired the shot, but he was too young to be hanged.
Mr Bentley, who was said to have a mental age of just eleven, was then convicted mainly because he allegedly urged his accomplice to shoot.
As a result of the campaign by Mr Bentley's sister, Iris, the Home Office granted him a limited posthumous pardon in 1993.
After Iris Bentley died, her daughter Maria continued the campaign.
From the newsroom of the BBC World Service