Craig McCreight v Her Majesty’s Advocate

Today at the Court of Criminal Appeal in Edinburgh three judges quashed the conviction of Craig McCreight.  Mr McCreight was convicted of Murder in 2002 at the High Court sitting in Edinburgh.  He was sentenced to life imprisonment and was ordered to serve a minimum of 18 years.

Mr McCreight was accused of forcing mother-of-three Yvonne Davidson to inhale chloroform.  However, evidence led at the original trial was shown in appeal to be grossly wrong and as such it resulted in a miscarriage of justice.

Lord Nimmo Smith, Lord Clarke and Lord Hardie, ruled that the crown will not be granted leave to hold a retrial.

Lord Nimo-smith said they were “entirely satisfied” that new evidence produced was of such significance that it was reasonable to conclude that the verdict of the jury amounted to a miscarriage of justice.

Evidence produced at the trial showed that the dead woman’s liver contained 1,064 mgs of chloroform per kilo on analysis. However, the appeal heard that the concentration of the chemical had been overstated 1,000 times following an arithmetical error in a laboratory and the true result was 1.064 mg for kilo of chloroform was present.

Further analysis of the stomach contents also revealed a level of chloroform that would be consistent with ingestion of the chemical.

Pathologist Paul Fineron, who gave evidence at the trial, had also altered his position that the poison was corrosive and now agreed that the signs found were consistent with the chloroform having been swallowed.

When the courts opinion is available I shall link to it from my blog.