Attorney General refuses to open David Kelly files: Papers hold key to fresh inquest…
Attorney General Refuses To Open David Kelly Files
Attorney General Dominic Grieve is refusing to open secret files which hold the key to David Kellyâ€™s death, it has emerged.
The decision on whether to order an inquest hinges on a bundle of documents which are locked in a Whitehall safe for up to 70 years.
They include the post-mortem examination report and other sensitive medical notes.
A group of doctors insists that the weapons inspector could not have committed suicide and bled to death in the way described by the official Hutton Inquiry.
They have called for Mr Grieve to open the files, in the hope that they will provide the evidence he needs to petition the High Court for an inquest.
But Mr Grieve is refusing to look at them, despite having the legal power to gain immediate access.
Instead, he is insisting that justice secretary Ken Clarke makes a decision on whether to release them.
This is despite the fact that Mr Grieve wrote to campaigners while in opposition saying he â€˜would reviewâ€™ all the associated medical and scientific records.
He was shadow justice secretary at the time. Now he is arguing that it would be â€˜extremely unusualâ€™ for him to ask for the papers.
He said Mr Clarke should decide whether to release the papers to the doctors, who would then pass them on to him, even though he could walk across Whitehall and collect them today.
Last night, a spokesman for Mr Grieve said: â€˜The Attorney General has no investigative function. Whilst he could ask for the papers it would be extremely unusual for him to take a proactive step of that kind.â€™
Dr Kellyâ€™s body was found in woods near his Oxfordshire home in July 2003 after he was identified as the source of a BBC story claiming the Labour government â€˜sexed upâ€™ its dossier on Iraqâ€™s supposed weapons of mass destruction.
Instead of a normal inquest, the Government set up the Hutton Inquiry to investigate the death. It concluded that Dr Kelly took his own life.
Lord Hutton then ordered the documents relating to the case be classified for 70 years.
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