December 10 2013 Latest news:
Saturday, August 31, 2013
Twenty five years after the murder of British tourist Julie Ward in Kenya, her father says he knows who killed her – and has accused the British state of helping the murderer escape justice.
John Ward has compiled a dossier alleging 50 Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) obstructions and revealed he is writing a book detailing the full extent of the deceit and naming the influential man close to the Kenyan government of the time he is sure murdered his daughter.
He claims Scotland Yard and the FCO know his identity, too, and has called for them to come clean about their actions – which he says amount to attempting to pervert the course of justice – and wants the investigation into Julie’s murder given equal
resources to the 2007 disappearance of Madeleine McCann, which has 37 detectives assigned to it. Three officers are working part-time on the Ward case.
After revelations about official wrong-doing in other areas, Mr Ward believes a fresh light should be shone on his daughter’s murder.
Miss Ward’s remains were found in the Masai Mara game reserve on September 13, 1988, a week after she was last seen alive. The 28-year-old was almost certainly raped and hacked to death before her body was chopped up, soaked in petrol and set alight.
Mr Ward, who will visit Kenya during this year’s anniversary, has campaigned for justice since a post-mortem report saying she had been murdered was altered to indicate she had been killed by animals. The Kenyans have admitted their part in the cover-up.
The FCO “absolutely rejects” any collusion allegations. Mr Ward said: “I know I have been badly messed about. When Julie was
murdered, the British had all manner of interests in Kenya to protect. When (the Kenyan government) signalled (it) did not want Julie’s death to be murder, the Foreign Office had to decide whether to support (it) or justice.
“The situation makes Foreign Office mandarins uncomfortable, in case their activities are exposed. I believe there are people who know who murdered Julie.
“I can’t think of another motive for them behaving as they have. Time goes by and I am getting older – I am 80 this year –
but she is still my daughter and I would like to convict the people who killed her.”
It’s nine years since a Lincolnshire Police investigation led by then Deputy Chief Constable Jon Stoddart into Mr Ward’s allegations of a conspiracy between the British High Commission (BHC) in Kenya, the FCO and the Met found clear evidence of “inconsistency and contradictions, falsehoods and downright lies” but no “firm evidence” of a “criminal conspiracy”.
The report summary says: “There is considerable evidence an officer in the political section of the BHC (Mr A) provided inconsistent accounts of events of September 1988. Likewise [David] Rowe, a former Kenyan police officer, proved evasive and vague. Both have been economical with the truth in relation to their knowledge of events surrounding Miss Ward’s murder.”
But it concludes: “The [murder]case remains eminently detectable”.
Mr Ward, who lives near Bury St Edmunds, claims the authorities tried to conceal the report, which was classified secret.
It took him two years to obtain a heavily redacted copy and another year to obtain an Executive Summary.
He also questions why Lincolnshire Police’s ongoing investigation into matters arising from a 2004 Suffolk inquest into Miss Ward’s death was passed to the Met and complains that:
■ The Met failed to honour Mr Stoddart’s undertakings to Suffolk coroner, Dr Peter Dean, to probe contradictory inquest evidence from Mr A and others.
■ A sample of excrement found at the crime scene and passed to the Met for forensic testing was said to be soil, a “mistake” only corrected when Mr Ward revealed forensic testing he commissioned showed the sample was excrement.
Mr Ward subsequently made a formal complaint, alleging the Met had failed to properly investigate the murder, not fulfilled undertakings to Dr Dean and attempted to shut down the unfinished investigation. He is unhappy that complaint is being dealt with by a Met commander rather than someone independent.
An FCO spokesman said: “The [Julie Ward] investigation is a matter for the Metropolitan Police and Kenyan authorities. We will not spec-ulate or comment on aspects of the investigation, potential lines of inquiry or suspects.
“Our deepest sympathies are with Julie Ward’s family. We will continue to offer appropriate advice and assist-ance where we can.
“We hope those responsible can finally be brought to justice. We absolutely reject any allegations of a cover-up or collusion with the Kenyan government. But we could, and should, have handled this case better and have learned from the mistakes made.”
A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: “The investigation remains open and officers are reviewing previous lines of inquiry.
“We are in contact with the family. A superintendent, detective sergeant and detective constable are currently working on the investigation; this case is not their sole responsibility.
“A complaint regarding the conduct of a former senior Met officer was referred to the Met’s Directorate of Professional
Standards in November 2012. It remains under consideration.”