Tag Archives: murder

Hilda Murrell – Murdered By The British State?

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In 1984 Hilda Murrell, a 78-year-old distinguished rose-grower turned anti-nuclear campaigner, was found brutally murdered outside her home town of Shrewsbury, England. The case became one of the biggest, most bizarre and baffling British murders of the 20th century involving political conspiracies surrounding the nuclear industry and the Falklands War.

After a cold case review, in 2005 Andrew George, who was a 16-year-old petty thief from a foster home, was convicted. In 2011, Hilda’s nephew, former British Navy Commander Robert Green, does not believe Mr George committed the murder – but who did? Robert spoke to Jason on Monday Matters.

Monday Matters Orlando Shooting 13 June 2016

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Jason has more reaction to those terrible events over in America as President Obama says the Orlando gunman, who shot dead 49 people at a gay nightclub, was a home-grown terrorist. Omar Mateen’s father has condemned his son – saying he’s “sad” but also “mad” about the attack.

We will hopefully cross live to Orlando and get the latest news and reaction.
After 9pm tonight we talk about another murder – but on British soil and one that happened over 30 years ago. Hilda Murrell was 78 and an anti-nuclear campaigner – when she was abducated from her home – stabbed and left to die in the Shropshire country side. Her nepher, former naval commander Robert Green – insists that she was killed by the state and or nuclear interested parties.

There is the latest music news and we may even hear from Nigel Farage who was in ‪#‎sittingbourne‬ ‪#‎kent‬ today.

The featured artist is Paul McCartney who turns 74 on Saturday – after 8pm we have 4 non-stop songs from the man with Wings.

Another day – another brutal murder

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Jo’s husband tweet this picture – how he wants his wife to be remembered

Words cannot express the pain and anger that many British people feel at the killing of a UK MP, in broad daylight, on 16 June 2016, on the streets of the small Yorkshire village of Birstall; death snatching the life of one of our most promising Member of Parliament – Jo Cox.

So far all we know is that her attacker was in his 50s, described as a loner who may have mental health issues – but on the latter point we still do not know.

It says a lot about our view of parliament and our politicians that few people outside of her constituency or parliament would have been aware of just how promising and respected Jo was.  She was only in parliament for 18 months – yet managed to punch through not only on political issues but also across the political divide.   Unlike some politicians who would argue over the direction of a worm – just because they couldn’t bear to agree, Jo was different and would work with anyone of whatever persuasion if they shared her views on the various humanitarian causes she championed.

But let’s be clear – Jo wasn’t just an MP – she was a daughter, a wife and mother of two children whom she loved more than anything.  In an emotional yet considered response, after his wife was pronounced dead – Jo’s husband Brendan said: “Today is the beginning of a new chapter in our lives. More difficult, more painful, less joyful, less full of love. I and Jo’s friends and family are going to work every moment of our lives to love and nurture our kids and to fight against the hate that killed Jo”.

We still do not know the cause – however, speaking at the scene of her death the leader of the labour party Jeremy Corbyn alluded to a possible answer when he said “She was taken from us in an act of hatred, in a vile act that has killed her.  It’s an attack on democracy, what happened yesterday. It’s the well of hatred that killed her “.  One assumes that the Prime Minister has been given constant updates by those holding the killer and may have passed on some information to Mr Corbyn.

If you want to know who Jo was and the type of platform that she was forging her way on – just listen to her maiden speech in the House of Commons in 2015.

 

I was on facebook when the news of Jo’s shooting started to break – responding to someone who had written a post on the EU referendum and how they only way to regain our country and stop immigration was to vote to leave.  My critical response to this including lamenting the idea that it is the EU that makes us undemocratic – when we have nearly 900 unelected Peers in the House of Lords with the power to change, delay and black legislation and whom cost the taxpayer about £21 million per year and that we should sort out the deckchairs on our own beach before looking over the water and blaming a messy beach abroad for our troubles.

I also touched on how the focus on immigration and EU bureaucrats let our own MPs and parliament off the hook – and was pretty scathing about our MPs.  Then as news started to roll in that not only had Jo been shot, but had succumbed to her injuries, I decided I could not hit the reply button.  It just didn’t feel right to be having a go at politicians when one had just been murdered on a British street in a small British village.  Maybe me and the British public have been too harsh on our MPs – the majority of whom, are not that different to us and who come within the communities we ourselves live.

I saved a copy of what I have written and I’m now not sure if I will ever respond to Mr Angry about Immigration – because, actually, I don’t want to get caught up in the tit for tat nasty – blown out of all proportion debate that we have had so far.  I will write something – but maybe I will be that bit more respectful to those who govern us – and maybe we all should.  I note that because the killer is white, with links to the far right – no mention of the words “terrorist’ or ‘terrorism’ has been made- yet, it is hard not to imagine if the killers skin colour had of been different – the headlines and news bulletins would be flooded with words trying to link this to some muslim extremist group either here or abroad – like what happened when the soldier Lee Rigby was murdered by a man who had mental health issues – who happened to be muslim.  Maybe we in the media need to also learn to just watch our language and how we present the news to the public.

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Dailymail headline screaming “yet another lorry load of migrants”

If all the public hear from the news that they consume and by certain political groups that we are “awash” with immigrants and that we are ‘full’ ‘cannot cope’ our shores are ‘flooded’ and our politicians are inept and unable to control the ‘flow of immigration’ – then maybe, just maybe, it lights the torch paper in people making them angry which then leads to some, who do not have the full control of their mental state, to see themselves as champions for Britain.  Whist taking the life of a wife and leaving to children without a mother.

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Dailymail clarification – tucked within the pages of the DailyHate

 

Orlando: Another Mass Shooting – LGBT targeted

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In the early hours of June 12, 2016, a gunman, who I’m not interesting in naming, walked into the gay night club called Pulse in Orlando, Florida and started shooting at a group of lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgendered people – who were doing nothing but being who they were and enjoying themselves.

This was a direct attack on gay people, freedom, humans, love and a different way of life.  As a gay man in love with another man you are always aware that there are people who would hurt, damage or kill people like me – just because of who they love.  Attitudes to gay people have fundamentally changed in the UK since I was born in the late 1970s.  Hostility was very present in the 80s when gay bars started to spring up in cities, albeit usually in discrete and concealed places – until the 90s and 2000s when the gay movement stopped hiding and people like me felt comfortable being open about our sexuality at work and so rather than being some distant object of derision – we become up close and personal with our straight colleagues – who realised – we were just like them.

But we are still not in a world, or country where being gay is still acceptable across the board.  When a bakery can refuse service to customers who wanted a gay themed cake because it is ‘against their belief’ – backed up by Christian groups and media elements.  It demonstrates to gay people that although we have journeyed far – the route back to the dark ages of the 1950s when we were illegal, arrested and in-prisoned – isn’t as far away as we might like to believe.

On my Monday Matters radio show I spoke to gay radio presenter DJ Justice, who presents his show in Orlando and often visited  Pulse and lost people that he knew in the atrocity.

 

 

JILL DANDO: UNSOLVED MURDER OF A CELEBRITY

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Jill Dando was a BBC journalist and presenter who for 14 years worked on successful programmes such as the flagship BBC Breakfast Time, Breakfast News, the BBC One O’Clock News, the Six O’Clock News, the travel programme Holiday, and the crime appeal series Crimewatch (from 1995 until her death). She was named BBC Personality of the Year in 1997.

On the morning of 26 April 1999, Jill was fatally shot outside her home in Fulham, London. No one has ever been successful found guilty of her murder. Local loner Barry George was jailed for her murder in 2001, but his conviction was overturned in 2008 following the emergence of new evidence. No one else has been charged. Her killer still remains at large.

Jason McCrossan spoke to Criminologist Dr James Treadwell from Birmingham City University about this peculiar and extremely sad case.

Oscar Pistorius: The Life & Trial of A Murderer

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Oscar Pistorius is a murderer. He brutally shot and killed his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, most probably after an argument, on the morning of valentines day 2013.  Later that day, Reeva had been due to speak to young girls at Sandton High School in Johannesburg, about respect from men and avoiding bad choices in relationships with partners.  Oscar not only put a stop to her talk – but to the rest of her life.

 

The image that the media proliferated and profiteered from was that Oscar was a wholesome good looking hero, a person who’d battled against the odds, succeeded with a disability and who could inspire a younger generation.  He made and sold column inches.

The truth was to become much murkier and complicated as the interview I did with author and blogger Lisa Wilson shows – Oscar, in my own words was “a nasty piece of work” and Lisa told me how he didn’t just compete his way to the top – he bullied and used his families wealth and influence to secure a place in the olympics and to ultimately pay for top legal representation – following his cold bloodied murder.  And  even now -with his bail set at 10,000 rand (or $700/ £450) – and him able to spend time at home as a convicted murderer – it seems to continue to work.

When Oscar was in the court room giving his evidence – most of it lies – I often wondered what his family heard – and why that differed so much from what I and the rest of the world heard?  (Apart from the odd crackpots who shamelessly spout his innocents)! Did Oscar’s family argue over whether to support what they must have known was the truth (he murdered Teeva) or was the honour of the family name just too important? I guess we’ll never know.

When Pistorius took to the witness stand – all I heard were the whimpering lies of a murderer – desperately trying to save his career – inconvenienced by his current predicament – wanting nothing more than to get away with his murder and get back to his celebrity lifestyle.

I often ask myself why didn’t his family find the humanity to say to him ‘Hey Oscar, quit with the lies – just tell the truth and let be done.  Reeva deserves the truth’.  But they didn’t. They supported his story and continue to push the lie that it was all an accident  – and that Oscar believed he was protecting his girlfriend with the unforgivable sentence ‘When Reeva went to bed that night she felt loved’.  What an abominable insult to Reeva and her family.

And that is one of the things that disturbs me about this family.  There was no humanity shown towards Reeva nor the Steenkamps.  I guess the family that surrounds Pistorius are tied to his success – you can imagine that as Oscar’s stature rose – so did theirs.  His adulation – became theirs- to share with friends and acquaintances, who also wanted a piece of the pie.

When Oscar pulled the trigger and aborted the ‘mission’ – they found themselves shackled to a narrative not of success & heroism – but of a angry, spiteful young man who put himself above others and treated women like  accessories – to own and discard at his whom.

One imagines – after all the highs – they didn’t want to face the lows – even if that meant denying facts, and perpetuating a lie.  They allowed themselves to become victims.

Unfortunately the latter also meant trampling all over the life and memory of someone else.  Oscar’s family couldn’t bring themselves to believe that their status within their social network, South Africa and the world beyond – was as bloodied as the toilet where Oscar ended Reeva’s life.

Oscar and his wealthy family have been pivitol to his success and his failure as a human.  The failure that lead him to become a murderer – who is currently on bail and out of jail – which shows what money and influence can do.  Had he been unknown, without the wealth – or another colour – he’d be banged up right now – contemplating his actions.

Lisa Wilson has co-authored many books about Oscar Pistorius- including her latest booked which she co-wrote with Nick van der Leek called THE APPEAL: Oscar Pistorius – which she wrote with the freelance journalist and author Nick van der Leek.

Oscar Pistorius: Murderer

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South Africa’s Supreme Court of Appeal has accepted the State’s appeal and changed the conviction that was handed down to Oscar Pistorius from manslaughter to murder.

Eric Leach spent just under 30 minutes reading the unanimous ruling which was agreed upon by all of the five judges.

Leach said that having armed himself with a high-calibre weapon, Pistorius must have foreseen that whoever was behind the door might die, especially given his firearms training.  Of course he should.  He killed Reeva because he was angry and because he felt he could.

The Supreme Court ruling comes as a relief to many people who thought Oscar had evaded justice and literally ‘got away with murder’.  Pistorius had given unconvincing testimony at his trial with him being referred to as a ‘poor witness’.  Many, including me, watched the trial at times with disbelief as Oscar’s defence team trotted out one questionable expert after another – it really  was nearly laughable – but it wasn’t, because a young woman was brutally murdered on valentines day by the very person who should of protected her.

Anyone, and there were thousands, who sat through the court case was left in no doubt that Oscar was an angry young man who always got what he wanted and was prone to violent outbursts – usually, but not always vocally.  It seems he was a ticking time-bomb waiting to go off.  Unfortunately, Reeva Steenkamp took the full impact of his explosion.

 

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Reeva Steenkamp

So, how did he manage to get off with it first time around?  Well, like most, if not all justice systems around the world – money and the ability to afford the best lawyers seem to have played its part.  Had Oscar been a black poor kid and Reeva been the same – this wouldn’t of even been a footnote in history and Oscar would be serving a life sentence in some unforsaken prison – where he would be unknown and forgotten about by all but a few close relatives.

The UK court has a system of juries which has its positives when faced with straight forward cases – however, can fall down when things are complicated and be swayed by good witnesses or defendants.  No system is, or can be, the perfect system.

I hope that the Steenkamps can now feel some sense that justice, from their home country, has finally came down on their side.

The murder of Daniel Morgan with Peter Jukes

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Daniel Morgan was a private investigator who was murdered in the car park of the Golden Lion pub in Sydenham in March 1987. He was said to have been close to exposing important police corruption. His death was the subject of several failed police inquiries and in 2011 was at the centre of allegations concerning the suspect conduct of News of the World journalists. Was he second alleged victim of the infamous gangster Kenneth Noye?  And what part did his former business partner Jonathan Rees and the last to speak to him have in his murder?  Sid Fillery, who led the initial murder investigation, retired from the Metropolitan Police on medical grounds and took over Daniel Morgan’s position as Jonathan Rees’s partner at Southern Investigations.

In 1998 Metropolitan Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Roy Clark conducted a third, secret, inquiry into the murder during which Southern Investigations’s office was bugged.  In December 2000, Jonathan Rees was found guilty of conspiring to plant cocaine on an innocent woman in order to discredit her in a child custody battle and sentenced to seven years imprisonment for attempting to pervert the course of justice.

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Peter Jukes – writer and adviser to Byline – world’s most visited crowdfunded journalism site

Jason McCrossan spoke to author and journalist Peter Jukes who outlined the history of the case and developments that he himself has discovered that shine a light on links between journalists and met police which strike at the heart of the British justice system.

For more information visit Peter Jukes page:  https://www.byline.com/column/2/article/277

Andreas Lubitz from pilot to mass killer

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Today marks another sad day in the story of aviation as it was confirmed that 28 year old co-pilot Andreas Lubitz was the probable cause of Germanwings flight 4U9525 being deliberately flown into the French Alps on Tuesday with the loss of 150 people.

This tragedy comes as the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 (MH370), thought to have also of been through the deliberate actions of one or both of the pilots, is still fresh in our minds with questions still hanging in the air about how it is possible for a pilot to block entry to the cockpit of his fellow pilot?  Malaysia 370 also raised serious questions about how it is possible for all communications from a plane to be shut off – effectively cloaking the plane and making it invisible?

Given the advances in military listening technology – it is hard to believe that the final location of MH370 isn’t known to at least one intelligence gathering agency.  However, any country with this specific information may be unwilling to provide such detail as it would compromise their secret data gathering sources and point to specific activity happening in that area which they were monitoring.

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The big question arising from Germanwings flight 4U9525 and European air travel in general is why we allow one person to be left at the controls of an aircraft at anyone time? In America, at least, if one of the pilots is required to leave the cockpit – a senior steward is called to occupy that space – leaving two people in the cockpit at all times.  Why have we been so lax here in Europe? Why did so many people have to die for such an easy procedure to be put in place?

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What made Andreas Lubitz take the actions he did will be discussed, dissected and debated for years to come.  The fact he did what he did is not just unforgivable but also the worst possible final action that anyone could take.  To kill yourself is a personal tragedy, but to kill yourself and many others, whom have placed their full trust in you – is totally reprehensible and cowardly.

Andreas will never know the individual personal sorrow of the families of those who perished  nor face the consequences of his actions.  And maybe the media place too much focus on these killers.  Maybe the real focus should be on the victims – and not the perpetrators.  Do we need to know his name?  Do we need to see his face? What of his family – how much privacy are they now entitled to?

What of the checks that are done on pilots?  If someone is going through a difficult time which is causing them mental stress – what are checks and balances in place to spot such signs – but also, how are pilots treated who do suffer mental issues?  How does the industry treat them?

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Marseille prosecutor Brice Robin stated in a press conference that the blackbox audio recorder showed the Captain had left the cockpit, possibly to use the toilet, and was denied access when he returned.  It was during the absence of the Captain that Lubitz manipulated the flight monitoring system that put the plane into a descent. “The action of selecting the altitude could only have been done voluntarily,” Prosecutor Robin said.

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He then detailed how the flight commander was heard to tap on the door to demand for it to be opened and that several calls were made by the Captain to the co-pilot for access to the cockpit in which the Captain identified himself – but there was no response from the cockpit or co-pilot.  However, the co-pilots breathing was clearly audible and the inputs required to keep the plane on it’s continuing decent meant that the co-pilot was not incapacitated and was indeed manipulating the plane.

Prosecutor Robin added: “The control tower at Marseille, receiving no response from the aircraft, asked for a distress code, and the activation of the transponder for a forced landing. There was no response. Air traffic control asked other aircraft in the area for a radio relay to try to contact the Airbus. No response came.

Germanwings A320 Plane Crash, France - 24 Mar 2015

In further revelations about the last moments of the plane it was stated “Alarms went off signalling the aircraft’s proximity to the ground, and we heard the sound of violent blows as if someone is trying to force the door. Just before the final impact we hear the sound of an impact on the [rock] embankment. There was no distress signal, no ‘mayday, mayday, mayday’ received by air traffic control….I don’t think the passengers realised what was happening until the last moments because on the recording we can only hear cries in the final seconds.”

The fact this disaster has been caused by deliberate human action is probably the worst outcome of any possible reason.  One man’s decision has lead to such grief, anguish and hurt.  He may not be missed – but it is to the families of the dead who are sorely missed – that we have to give our thoughts to and feelings.  As I watch the news coverage – the focus has shifted from that of the victims to that of the killer.  Maybe we all have lessons to learn.

And, out of all possible circumstances that could bring a plane down – wasn’t this always a likely scenario?

Here is a video that details the workings of the cockpit door – which appears to be the barrier to the Captain being able to try and intervene forcing a different possible outcome.

The ISIS chain of terror

An image grab taken from a propaganda video uploaded on June 11, 2014 by jihadist group the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) allegedly shows ISIL militants gathering at an undisclosed location in Iraq's Nineveh province. Militants took control of the Iraqi city of Tikrit and freed hundreds of prisoners today, police said, the second provincial capital to fall in two days. AFP PHOTO / HO / ISIL
An image grab taken from a propaganda video uploaded on June 11, 2014 by jihadist group the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) allegedly shows ISIL militants gathering at an undisclosed location in Iraq’s Nineveh province. Militants took control of the Iraqi city of Tikrit and freed hundreds of prisoners today, police said, the second provincial capital to fall in two days. AFP PHOTO / HO / ISIL

The medieval way in which terrorist organisation ISIS dispatched Muadh al-Kasasbeh, a Jordanian pilot, to his death in January 2015 was something that caused nausea to anyone who cherishes life and believes in human dignity.  Of course, not everyone gasped a breath of repulsion with news reports circulating that Isil broadcast the murder on giant public screens to crowds that included young children cheering and chanting in Raqqa, the de facto capital of Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

Of course, I say medieval – however, one does not need to look back to the middle ages to find tales of atrocious behaviour carried out by man kind up man kind.  As is pointed out in the blog “We Are Respectable Negroes

For almost a century, the United States practiced a unique cultural ritual that was as least as gruesome as the “Medieval” punishments meted out by ISIS against its foes.

What is now known as “spectacular lynching” involved the ceremonial torture, murder–and yes, burning alive–of black Americans by whites.

In fact, the burned to death images of the black body were one of the most popular types of mass culture in 19th and 20th century America.

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And who can forget the many atrocities carried out by German’s under the NAZI flag including beastly experiments with victims coerced into participating; they did not willingly volunteer and there was never informed consent. Typically, the experiments resulted in death, disfigurement or permanent disability, and as such are considered as examples of medical torture.

A Jewish child is forced to show the scar left after SS physicians removed his lymph nodes. This child was one of 20 Jewish children injected with tuberculosis germs as part of a medical experiment. All were murdered on April 20, 1945. Neuengamme concentration camp, Germany, between December 1944 and February 1945. — Guenther Schwarberg
A Jewish child is forced to show the scar left after SS physicians removed his lymph nodes. This child was one of 20 Jewish children injected with tuberculosis germs as part of a medical experiment. All were murdered on April 20, 1945. Neuengamme concentration camp, Germany, between December 1944 and February 1945.
— Guenther Schwarberg

The terror and brutality that is being carried out by ISIS is not new – the speed and method of the delivery of the images is. I’m grateful to have been brought up in the West – in a country where religion is a private matter and the freedom to live life is not dictated by the passages of a religious text or by the gun or knife or a brutal regime that won’t accept dissent.  People in Britain must be free to choose to have a religion or not – but it must be a choice and as  writes in the telegraph:

Yesterday came a damning official report by Louise Casey saying that Labour’s Rotherham borough council was “in complete denial” and had failed to respond properly to last year’s scathing report by Prof Alexis Jay. Men of Pakistani origin had been allowed to abuse white girls in part because of “misplaced political correctness”: council staff were terrified of being labelled racist. Cowards and fools, they “decided such issues should be dealt with by people from the Pakistani community”. Good thinking, chaps!

In Rotherham, Casey also found that police had failed to pursue Pakistani perpetrators for fear of “offending the community”.

What community? Not yours and mine, that’s for sure. So desperate is the situation that Whitehall-appointed commissioners are to move in and take over the council. In Rotherham, we see with terrible clarity how the whole edifice of multiculturalism is as rotten as a Tudor monarch’s mouth.

What Allison fails to note is that the kind of abuse that happened in Rotherham isn’t just limited to a particular ethnic group – white men will take just as much advantage of girls as any other race – the worrying element is if the report is true and staff failed to act out of a fear of being racist.  And this is why I am strongly against religious schools where children are divided along lines of cultural and often racial background and never mix with anyone who is not of their belief nor race.  This cannot be good for our future.

If we are to learn anything from the atrocities committed by ISIS – is that we must integrate the different cultures and backgrounds that exist within Britain better than we are doing at the moment.  What makes a teenage boy or girl think that their life is only valuable when it has a bomb attached to it and they are kill themselves and as many people as they can?

How did we let this situation happen? The Prime Minister David Cameron has jumped in feet first to tackle what they would term welfare scroungers – but what about extremists and extremism? It is lazy to think of this as a muslim probably – any more than suggesting that when the IRA was active on British shores they were a catholic problem.

One of the reasons we elect politicians is to make us safe – so far, they have failed us.  But if UKIP is the answer – we’re most definitely asking the wrong questions.