Ken Clarke under pressure to release Kelly papers
By Christopher Hope
Ken Clarke under pressure to release Kelly papers as Dominic Grieve waits for evidence
Kenneth Clarke is under fresh pressure to release sealed medical reports surrounding the death of David Kelly after an appeal from the Attorney General for concrete evidence that he did not kill himself.
The Daily Telegraph disclosed how Dominic Grieve, the Government’s senior law officer, was prepared to intervene in the controversy, after admitting that those who doubted Dr Kelly’s suicide “may have a valid point”.
Mr Grieve said he was waiting until Mr Clarke, the Justice Secretary, decided whether to release the medical documents, including the post-mortem report, which were sealed by Lord Hutton, who investigated the death in 2004, for 70 years.
The leader of a group of doctors, who are pushing for Mr Grieve to apply for a full inquest into the death, said it was “strange” that Mr Clarke was sitting on the evidence which Mr Grieve, wished to see.
Dr Michael Powers QC said: “The clamour for a full inquest is based upon the concern that neither the doctors nor the public have been given access to key information.
“It seems strange that the Attorney General too is left waiting for the release of medical evidence held by the Ministry of Justice.
“Secrecy only fuels speculation. It is time now for all the issues and unanswered questions to be explored by a coroner.”
Mr Grieve told The Daily Telegraph in an interview that the Government wanted to resolve the controversy. He said: “We would like to resolve this in a way that can give the public reassurance.
“People who have expressed concerns about why Lord Hutton did not tie up every loose end may have a valid point.”
Pressed later on television whether he thought there had been a “cover-up” over Dr Kelly’s death by the last Government, Mr Grieve, told ITV News: “”I have no reason to think… that there has been a cover-up.
“As matters stand at the moment I haven’t seen any evidence but if there is any evidence my office is the place to send it to.”
A Ministry of Justice spokesman said: “The request for the release of papers is currently under consideration”.
Dr Kelly’s body was found in a wood near his home in Oxfordshire in July 2003 shortly after he was exposed as the source of a BBC report which said the Government had exaggerated the grounds for the war in Iraq.
His death led to an inquiry by Lord Hutton which concluded that he had, killed himself, using a knife to cut his wrist and taking an overdose of co-proxamol painkillers.