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Thursday, 17 August, 2000, 20:05 GMT 21:05 UK
Murder appeal after print error
David Asbury
David Asbury is led away after his trial
A man convicted of the murder of a Kilmarnock woman is to seek an immediate appeal after it was confirmed that fingerprint evidence used in his trial was wrong.

David Asbury was convicted in 1997 of the murder of pensioner Marion Ross.

Fingerprint evidence led in his trial was re-examined after BBC Frontline Scotland exposed failings in the Scottish Criminal Records Office - the body responsible for checking prints.

Four SCRO experts were earlier this month suspended and the Crown Office has now confirmed that evidence led against David Asbury was wrong.

Colin Boyd
Colin Boyd: Inquiry ordered
The case follows a campaign by former Strathclyde detective Shirley McKie to clear her name.

She was wrongly accused of leaving a fingerprint at the scene of Marion Ross's murder.

When she denied leaving the print, she was tried for perjury, and acquitted at a trial in May 1999.

The four SCRO experts who gave evidence against Ms McKie were last month suspended from duty and an independent report called for fingerprint evidence in future cases to be double-checked.

Lord Advocate Colin Boyd also ordered that fingerprint evidence used in Asbury's trial should be checked by independent experts.

The Crown Office has now confirmed that there was a fault in the preparation of that evidence.

Solicitors for Asbury - who is in the fourth year of a life sentence at Shotts Prison - will appeal at the earliest possible date and will ask for him to be freed pending that appeal.


 Click here to watch Finger of Suspicion, part of BBC Scotland's Frontline series.

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See also:

03 Aug 00 | Scotland
Fingerprint experts suspended
06 Jul 00 | Scotland
Fingerprint perjury inquiry launched
23 Jun 00 | Scotland
Trial chaos fears played down
22 Jun 00 | Scotland
Fingerprints to be 'double-checked'
16 May 00 | Scotland
False impression: transcript
18 Jan 00 | Scotland
Finger of suspicion: transcript
17 Jan 00 | Scotland
Frontline Scotland
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