LAWYERS from civil rights group Liberty have backed a campaign to clear the name of a man found guilty of the shotgun murder of his fiancee's parents.
John Wadham, the group's legal director, said the conviction of Jonathan Jones is being added to a file of 200 alleged miscarriages of justice compiled by his staff.
Jones was convicted of shooting Harry and Megan Tooze, the retired parents of his fiancee Cheryl, at their farm near Bridgend, south Wales.
The prosecution claimed he murdered the couple in order to benefit from their daughter's inheritance. A key plank of the case was that he left a fingerprint on a teacup before the killing. But defence solicitors say the fingerprint was left on the cup innocently after Jones came to the farm following the discovery of the bodies. They also claim that at the time of the killing, Jones was 250 miles away in Orpington, Kent
Two weeks ago, it was revealed that the trial judge, Mr Justice Rougier, had expressed his concern about the verdict in a letter to the Home Secretary.
Stuart Hutton, Jones' solicitor, says papers have now been lodged with the Court of Appeal and investigators are gathering more evidence of a possible alibi for Jones.
“I am very confident,” Hutton says. “Academically, there is no case, it is a bit of a mystery how the jury reached the verdict it did.”
Wadham says: “We have somebody from a local office looking at it. The quicker the appeal gets through the the system the better.”
The campaign against the verdict is led by Megan Tooze.