Page last updated at 09:50 GMT, Wednesday, 10 December 2008

Chinook case judicial review call

Chinook helicopter crash
Campaigners claimed the crash was caused by mechanical faults

Campaigners seeking to clear the names of two dead RAF pilots blamed for a 1994 Chinook helicopter crash may seek a judicial review.

The MoD has confirmed that a verdict of gross negligence on the Mull of Kintyre crash would not be overturned.

The decision came after a year-long review prompted by campaigners who had handed a dossier to the MoD, which they said included new evidence.

They have claimed there were serious flaws in the helicopter.

The crash, 14 years ago, killed four special forces crew and 25 senior members of Northern Ireland's intelligence community.

Those on board were headed for Fort George, a military base near Inverness.

Flt Lt Tapper, 30, from Burnham Thorpe, Norfolk, and Flt Lt Cook, 28, from Church Crookham, Hampshire, were initially cleared of blame by an RAF board of inquiry.

It ruled it was impossible to establish the exact cause of the crash.

A fatal accident inquiry reached the same conclusion.

However, that conclusion was overturned by two senior RAF officers who said the pilots were guilty of gross negligence for flying too fast and too low in thick fog.

A year ago the former Defence Secretary Des Browne agreed to review the case, after campaigners obtained a previously unpublished memo, using freedom of information rules, which they claimed would clear the pilots.

'Institutional blockage'

Campaigners said they may now seek a judicial review in the courts.

Mike Tapper, the father of one of the pilots, said the secretary of state "did not seem to be able to override his officials".

He said: "The best thing that has come out of this has been the report by Michael Powers which once you've read it you have now doubt whatsoever that the pilots were not guilty of gross negligence.

"No-one has put forward a valid or indeed any reason why your son made the waypoint change to fly voluntarily straight into the mountain.

"We will never give up, but it's very hard to see how you can go ahead when there is what can only be described as an institutional blockage within the Ministry of Defence."



Print Sponsor


SEE ALSO
Dead Chinook pilots not cleared
09 Dec 08 |  Scotland
Hopes over Chinook crash dossier
15 Jan 08 |  Scotland
Browne re-examines Chinook crash
06 Dec 07 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
Chinook anniversary justice call
02 Jun 05 |  Scotland

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


FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC navigation

BBC © 2013 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific