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Sunday, November 14, 1999 Published at 11:42 GMT

UK: Scotland

Scots Guards' case to be re-examined

James Fisher (left) and Mark Wright were reinstated in the Army

A new army board is to be held to look into the case of two Scots Guards convicted of murdering a Belfast teenager, the Ministry of Defence has confirmed.

An MoD spokesman said the move followed comments by a High Court judge in Northern Ireland who severely criticised the Army's decision not to discharge the pair.

Mr Justice Kerr said the original army board's view that the soldiers, James Fisher and Mark Wright, merely made an error of judgment was completely inconsistent with the findings of the trial judge.

[ image: Peter McBride was shot in the back]
Peter McBride was shot in the back
Fisher, of Ayr, and Wright, of Arbroath, were released last year after serving less than four years of a life sentence for the murder of 18-year-old Peter McBride in 1992.

The soldiers were on foot patrol in Belfast when the incident occurred.

Eyewitnesses said McBride was searched by the patrol but the troops denied this.

The original trial was told McBride had suddenly grabbed another soldier's earpiece and run off.

Fisher and Wright subsequently fired at him, hitting him twice in the back. The teenager died soon afterwards.

The spokesman said: "The Army board will consider the case afresh as soon as possible."

However, he added that the setting up of the board did not necessarily mean the soldiers would be discharged.

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