[Marxism] Statement From Lawyers Of Brazilian Killed By Police On London Tube

Jscotlive at aol.com Jscotlive at aol.com
Wed Aug 17 12:52:03 MDT 2005

In the British news yesterday and today, it has emerged that London Met  lied 
about circumstances surrounding the execution of Jean Charles de Menezes  
recently on a London tube train. The police claimed that they attempted to  
apprehend de Menezes but that he ran and jumped over the barrier. This is false.  
Eyewitness accounts have revealed that at no point was he aware he was being  
followed. A decision was made early on in surveillance operation to kill  him. 
Press Statement #2
Jean Charles de Menezes

Response to the  evidence made public during the last 24 hours as to the true 
circumstances  of the death of Jean Charles de Menezes.

Yesterday the family of Jean  Charles de Menezes and we, their lawyers, 
became aware through the press  that virtually the entire body of information 
either placed, or allowed to  remain, in the public domain since Jean Charles 
de Menezes was killed on  July 22nd 2005, has been false.

Insofar as the claim of the existence of  an official inquiry has contributed 
to or provided for a situation in which  a blanket of secrecy has covered the 
true facts, and lies and scenarios have  been allowed to hold good, we on 
behalf of the family suggest that claim has  constituted a grave public 

In consequence, we ask now  that the nature and pace and ultimate objectives 
of any investigation  change. The de Menezes family ask for only one outcome 
and that that be  swift, that is that the entire truth surrounding Jean 
Charles death be made  public now as a matter of urgency.

The public interest coincides  completely with the interests of the family. 
>From the beginning the most  senior of police officers and government 
ministers including the Prime  Minister, claimed the death of Jean Charles to 
be an unfortunate accident  occurring in the context of an entirely 
legitimate, justifiable, lawful and  necessary policy. In the context of the 
lies now revealed, that claim has  become even less sustainable and even more 
alarming. It is inconceivable  that the true facts as revealed yesterday, 
were not made known to senior  police and ministers immediately; for any to 
have made comments publicly  without first informing themselves of the true 
facts would have been  entirely reckless and wrong.

>From the outset the family have raised a  number of obvious questions

1.    How was Jean Charles de  Menezes first identified as a suspect and on 

2.   Why was he allowed to board a bus without challenge if he was indeed a  

3.    Why was he allowed to continue his journey  unchallenged if he was a 

4.    Why was he allowed  to board an underground train if he was a suspect?

5.    When  did police identify themselves to him and how?

6.    What  opportunities were afforded for alternative action other than  

7.    What alternative means of incapacitating a  suspect were available on 
day; if alternative means were not available  why not, and if they were why 
were they not used?

8.     Where did a “shoot to kill” policy emanate from and on what claimed 
basis? What public debate and democratic accountability surrounded the  
coming into being of that policy?

9.     Why was the  suggestion that five bullets were fired allowed to 
as a public  assertion, uncorrected, when there were eight (seven to the  

10.    Why were members  of the de Menezes  family in the UK, having been 
homeless by the securing of Jean Charles’  residence,  placed inaccessibly in 
a hotel by the police and the  telephones in their rooms ordered to be cut 
off by the police so that they  could not contact Brazil.

11.    Why did police officers  actively lobby Brazilian officials here to 
dissuade Jean Charles’ parents  (without a telephone in Brazil) from 
obtaining a second post  mortem?
12.    Why was the pathologist at the post mortem conducted  on July 27th, 
which senior investigating police officers were present)  told the following:
“This man’s death occurred as part of the emergency  relating to the 
of bombs on public transport in London. On the  morning of the 22nd July 2005 
he was pursued by armed police officers as a  result of surveillance. He was 
followed into Stockwell Tube Station where he  vaulted over the ticket 
barrier. He ran downstairs and onto a tube train  where it appears that he 
stumbled. The officers then immobilised him and a  number of shots were 
fired. At the present time I am not sure as to any  further details.”

13.     Why was he not told of the true facts  which clearly by then must 
been available.

14.    What  CCTV footage from the outside and inside of Stockwell 
station  and from within the underground train exists? If there is none, why 
is there  none?

In the light of many of the questions above having been answered  during the 
last 24 hours by information clearly already in the possession of  the 
police, we emphasise that we are unable to have confidence in any of the  
investigative processes that are now on offer in this case. We point in  
particular to the failure of the police, in breach of their statutory duty,  
to invite the IPPC to commence its investigations from the first moment of  
the shootings on July 22nd. A fatal delay of several days, we understand,  
occurred thereafter during which time we are unaware that the IPPC itself  
proactively attempted to intervene. We have the gravest of  concerns.

1.    First that evidence may not have been  appropriately retrieved by 
independent investigators and may now have  permanently disappeared. We point 
in particular to the unresolved question  as to whether any CCTV footage of 
the station or the train does in fact  exist and was retrieved.

2.    We observe that a number of  written statements by police officers in 
direct contradiction to what was  previously understood are being revealed 
through the press; one in  particular points to the fact that Jean Charles de 
Menezes was never in  fact, appropriately identified as a suspect from the 
time of his leaving the  house.

3.    We do not know whether police officers who appear  already to have made 
statements in this inquiry have made statements under  caution and are being 
treated as suspects in relation to a proper  investigation of an unlawful 
killing, or are being treated instead as only  witnesses and not suspected of 
any level of involvement in what at its  lowest must be gross negligence (a 
potential ground for an accusation of  unlawful killing).

4.    We do not know at what levels police  officers, including senior police 
officers, are being interviewed and  whether under caution or not. We do not 
know who is being interviewed and by  whom?

5.    We do not know whether these include senior police,  past and present 
appeared to believe, wrongly, that they were entitled  to order a blanket 
“shoot to kill” practice.

In these circumstances,  on behalf of the family, we suggest that a 
different, urgent, and open  inquiry and public debate take place. It is 
neither sane nor responsible to  have issues of such enormous public 
importance, as well as of such pain to  the family concerned, to be allowed 
to drift towards an unspecified date at  an unspecified and perhaps 
inappropriate hearing in the future which may too  late consider itself to be 
too limited in any event to consider the  important issues that have to be 
raised here and now.

We underline as  a reminder, that immense public debate took place 
immediately after the  shooting of Jean Charles de Menezes. All of that 
debate took place and was  allowed to take place on entirely wrong factual 
assumptions. We are now in a  very different situation. Someone with official 
access has,  it  appears,  been sufficiently disturbed by that dangerous 
position, to  make internal documents public. In these circumstances, we and 
the family of  Jean Charles de Menezes regard the action of revealing those 
documents as a  true public service and ask that that initiative not now be 
undermined by  renewed secrecy, delay and inactivity on the part of those 
with  responsibility for investigation.

More information about the Marxism mailing list