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December 11th 2020

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The quashing of these convictions feels like the heavy lead box we have been trapped in has had the lid ripped off

Dr Neil Hudgell

Dr Neil Hudgell

Executive Chairman

The quashing of these convictions feels like the heavy lead box we have been trapped in has had the lid ripped off

Chris Trousdale, 38, from Whitby, was one of the country’s youngest sub postmasters when he was prosecuted by the Post Office and advised to plead guilty to false accounting or face jail.

Chris Trousdale, 38, from Whitby, was one of the country’s youngest sub postmasters when he was prosecuted by the Post Office and advised to plead guilty to false accounting or face jail.

He was sentenced to a Community Punishment Order in March 2004, with a probation order and a fine, at the age of just 22.

Here, he gives his reaction following the quashing of his conviction in court.

This has been a long and torturous 16 year journey, finally today the quashing of these wrongful convictions feels like the heavy lead box we have been trapped in has had the lid ripped off, we can take our first breath and look forward to being able to start to heal and rebuild.

We owe a huge debt of gratitude to those who have helped us along the way. Along with our families, friends and expert legal teams, special thanks must be given to Alan Bates, who set up the Justice For Subpostmasters Alliance, and to Kay Linnell, without their tireless work we would not be where we are today.

A mention must also go to Lord Arbuthnot and other MP’s who could see the injustice and have campaigned on our behalf and to the diligent work of the CCRC who referred to court the biggest single group of appeals in UK history. We now look forward to the New Year so we can offer our support to colleagues whose appeals are with the Court of Appeal.

Although todays result is a welcomed milestone there is still a long way to go. Our hope now is that Post Office will engage in a meaningful way to ensure that all those who were wrongfully convicted and who had their lives destroyed are properly compensated.

We again urge ministers to upgrade the non-statutory review into this scandal, currently underway by retired judge Sir Wyn Williams, so that it may be given statutory legal powers and a wide enough scope to ensure that the victims and the British taxpayers get the answers they deserve and so any lessons can be truly understood.

In the news: ITV

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