BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific Arabic Spanish Russian Chinese Welsh

 You are in: World: Europe
Front Page 
Middle East 
South Asia 
From Our Own Correspondent 
Letter From America 
UK Politics 
Talking Point 
In Depth 

Commonwealth Games 2002

BBC Sport

BBC Weather

Wednesday, 23 January, 2002, 00:48 GMT
Lockerbie appeal to begin
Scottish Court at Camp Zeist
The appeal is at the Scottish Court at Camp Zeist
Five senior Scottish judges will begin hearing the appeal on Wednesday of the man convicted of the 1988 Lockerbie bombing.

It is expected the appeal, to be heard in the Scottish Court at Camp Zeist in the Netherlands, will last up to six weeks.

Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed Al Megrahi was found guilty of bombing Pan Am 103 over Lockerbie and killing 270 people, after a nine-month trial at Camp Zeist.

He was jailed for life on 31 January 2001, with a recommendation from the judges that he serve at least 20 years.

Abdel Baset Ali Mohammed Al-Megrahi
Al Megrahi is appealing his conviction

His co-accused, Al Amin Khalifa Fhimah, was acquitted.

Al Megrahi lodged an appeal against his conviction in June 2001. As yet, it is not know on what grounds his appeal will be made.

Under Scots legal procedure the appellant need not reveal this in advance of the case.

But BBC Scotland home affairs correspondent Reevel Alderson says it is likely to focus on the possibility of new evidence.

There have been claims from a Heathrow Airport worker, who said he told police of a break-in to Pan Am's baggage store the night before the bombing.

The correspondent says: "If this were to be allowed as new evidence that was not available to the original trial, its significance would be that Megrahi's lawyers could cast doubt on the prosecution claim that the suitcase containing the bomb was put onto the New York flight from Malta Airport where both Megrahi and Fhima had worked."

During the appeal, Megrahi's legal team will present legal arguments aimed at convincing the five appeal judges, headed by Scotland's most senior judge, Lord Cullen, that Megrahi was wrongly accused.

It will either see Al Megrahi acquitted or transferred to a prison in Scotland to complete his sentence.

Starting at 0900GMT BBC News Online will provide live video coverage of the appeal.

The BBC's David Shukman at Camp Zeist
"Al Megrahi's lawyers will argue there has been a miscarriage of justice"
The BBC's Barnaby Mason
"The appeal is not a retrial"
Lockerbie victim's mother Rosemary Wolf
"I'm expecting the verdict will not be reversed"
Defence lawyer Ibrahim Legwell
"We feel justice will prevail"
Lockerbie megapuff graphic


Key stories


The trial

Click here to access links to live coverage of the Lockerbie appeal
Lockerbie appeal live

Internet links:

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Europe stories are at the foot of the page.

E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Europe stories