KEVIN O’NEILL IS INNOCENT
arrived in London in the summer of 1985, from Paisley in the west of
Scotland, intending a new life but soon enough discovered that the
London streets of Thatcher’s England were no more littered with gold
than the century before. For
the next few months he lived on the streets and in squats with two
short spells in young offenders’ institutions.
A matter of weeks after he was out, after the second sentence,
a murder took place in the squat in which he was living.
was picked up two days later and became a vulnerable suspect in police
custody. Kevin was
particularly concerned to protect the young women who had been in the
squat, not realising they were also in police custody.
The police charged Kevin and two young French men with murder.
In June 1987 Kevin was convicted of murder and Christoph McKuch
and Laural Dhainault of actual bodily harm.
Kevin really didn’t need a prosecution the way the defence played the case. Kevin was seriously disadvantaged by the effect of “cell confession” evidence on the conduct of the trial. Kevin felt he was “ditched” by his solicitors and left serving a long sentence.
The Home Office C3 division didn’t tell Kevin they shouldn’t be dealing with the matter so in 1997 they passed the case to the Criminal Cases Review Commission who, after getting the wrong expert evidence, decided not to refer the case to the Court of Appeal. Kevin is on a legal merry-go-round which it seems impossible to get off.
is now in the 23rd year of an unjust conviction with a new legal team
looking at the case.