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Reporters Monday, 13 September, 1999, 12:57 GMT 13:57 UK
John Ware

John Ware joined the Panorama team as a reporter in 1986. He began his journalistic career as a reporter on the Droitwich Guardian, before moving to the Worcester Evening News.

He worked for The Sun in Belfast from 1974 to 1977 before becoming a researcher on World in Action. He was promoted to producer on the programme in 1981, leaving five years later to join the BBC.

Legal impact

Between 1992 and 1997, in addition to his work on Panorama, John Ware also presented Rough Justice, Taking Liberties and Inside Story. Several of the cases he covered were referred back to the Court of Appeal and some of the convictions were quashed.

One of John Ware's specialities has been the conflict in Northern Ireland which he has covered regularly since 1974.

Panorama investigations 1984-2000

Several of his investigations have uncovered major stories.

  • In 1984, he filmed two Scotland Yard Flying Squad officers in the act of setting up an armed robbery and his evidence led to their trial at the Old Bailey.

  • In 1989 he uncovered the evidence that led first to the District Auditor and then the High Court to accuse Dame Shirley Porter of "gerrymandering" by attempting to rig the Westminster City Council's elections.

  • In 1990, he discovered an attempt by paratroopers in Belfast to cover up the unlawful shooting of joyriders.

  • In 1996, he reported on human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia and how the Sharia courts sent an innocent young man to his death by public beheading.

  • In 1997 he discovered papers belonging to the Deputy Prime Minister showing that despite elections promises to the contrary, the new Labour government planned to privatise the London Underground within two months of taking office.

  • In 1998 he unearthed evidence showing that Deborah Parry, one of the two "Saudi Nurses" was innocent of murdering Yvonne Gilford in 1996.

    Related story: nurses feared rape by police

  • Also in 1998, he secured evidence of secret price fixing deals between car dealers and three leading motor manufacturers, including Volvo which led to the Director General of Fair Trading John Bridgeman to accuse the Swedish car giant of "disgraceful" conduct, while pointing out that under the government's proposed new competition laws, the company could have been fined 70m.

    Related story: Volvo escapes price-fix penalty

  • In 2000 he revealed that, in contravention of New Labour's strict contest rules, the party's General Secretary and her senior officials were responsible for leaking a confidential list of London party members to Downing Street's preferred London Mayoral candidate Frank Dobson giving him an unfair advantage over rival candidate Ken Livingstone.

    More on this programme: Losing Control


    John was named Broadcast Journalist of the Year at the RTS Journalism Awards in February 2001 for Who Bombed Omagh? and Spin Doctors which was an investigation into the turthfulness of government claims about NHS spending and new initiatives. "Who Bombed Omagh" also received the Current Affairs Home Award.

    He has won the Current Affairs Home Award twice previously. Firstly in 1983 for "The Honourable Member for Belfast West" - a profile of Gerry Adams MP and in 1987, after joining Panorama, he won the award for "Brent Schools-Hard Left Rules", a report on the London Borough's anti-racist policy.


    He is the author of "Mengele, the Complete Story", published in 1986 and occasionally writes for newspapers, including the Sunday Telegraph and Sunday Times. John Ware is currently preparing a programme for transmission shortly before the election which audits the government's record.

  • Links to more Reporters stories are at the foot of the page.

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