After two decades of protesting his innocence, a man in Greater Manchester has successfully got a rape conviction quashed. Andy Malkinson’s rape conviction and its subsequent quashing have raised serious questions about the justice system’s handling of his case.
Malkinson spent 17 years of the two decades behind bars, fighting for his innocence in a case in which DNA evidence has now implicated another man.
The Crown Prosecution Service, as per BBC, did not oppose Malkinson’s appeal and on Wednesday (July 26th, 2023) the Court of Appeals ruled in his favour.
As per the BBC report, the nightmare began when in 2003 Greater Manchester Police arrested Malkinson, a resident of Grimsby, for a crime he knew nothing about.
Despite fervently denying involvement and lacking any forensic evidence linking him to the attack, he was wrongfully identified by the victim in an identity parade. The next year, he was jailed for life, with a minimum sentence of seven years.
The student of Information Science, who back then was 37-year-old and was temporarily working as a security guard, faced a legal battle where everything seemed to conspire against him.
He faced witnesses with criminal records whose credibility was never properly scrutinised. Even when Malkinson cooperated with the police, they remained dismissive of his innocence. His refusal to falsely confess to a crime he didn’t commit meant he had to endure the unimaginable pain of 17 years behind bars.
While incarcerated, Malkinson’s faith in justice eroded as he encountered bureaucratic indifference. Malkinson claims that attempts to present his case were met with “indifference,” and the possibility of rehabilitation was denied since he maintained his innocence.
He was finally released in December 2020 on a strict life license. The charity ‘Appeal’ has been a champion of his innocence, exposing a series of missed opportunities in the investigation.
“I asked the CCRC to commission new DNA testing to prove my innocence years ago, but they refused. They wouldn’t even bother reviewing the police files,” revealed the now 57-year-old.
Thanks to advances in DNA analysis, crucial evidence was identified, leading to the arrest of a new suspect. Yet, the process remains slow, and Malkinson seeks a full investigation into the failings of the Greater Manchester Police and an independent review by the Criminal Cases Review Commission.
“I want the CCRC Chair Helen Pitcher to apologise for failings and commission an external, independent review aimed at learning lessons from what went wrong in their handling of my case,” said Malkinson.”I am unspeakably angry with Greater Manchester Police. I want those who have done wrong to be brought to account,” he added.
Speaking to the press outside the court after Wednesday’s (July 26th) ruling, the wrongly incarnated man said that the conviction left “a gaping black hole in my life”. “I did not commit the crime, but I was treated as if I did,” he said.