Justice for Black people wrongfully convicted in 70s and 80s Brixton

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To: The Home Secretary/Home Office | The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC)

We demand the setting up of an independent review of criminal convictions in 70s & 80s Brixton; with the objective of pardoning and compensating victims of the “commonplace”, “fitting-up” and “beating-up” of black people by the MET police.

Why is this important?

Petition by Grassroots Black Left (GBL)

The death of George Floyd at the hands of US police sparked worldwide racial injustice awareness and soul searching, leading ex senior Metropolitan police officer Peter Bleksley to publish an expose in the Sun newspaper, titled “I was part of vile, racist police force that “fitted up” and “beat up” black youths in ‘80s – Brixton Riots were wake-up call”.

In it he details how Black people in Brixton were routinely attacked by police and convicted of crimes they had not committed. The devastating effect these attacks and convictions had on the lives of countless law-abiding Black people and their families would have set in motion a spiral of shame, disadvantage and failure that reverberates today.

The destructive ripple effect of just one false conviction is significant and we know this practice was “commonplace”; carried out over a sustained period. This abuse was likely indicative of police attitudes across the UK at the time, therefore we do not believe Brixton was an isolated case.

Though we support the cathartic confession of Peter Bleksley and thank him for speaking out while other have remained silent – the fact remains that the reputations of countless Black people have been tarnished and bones, families, careers, hearts and lives broken and remain so, with no recompense – just cover-up and a doubling down of police denials.

We demand a pardon to restore the dignity of the falsely convicted and financial compensation to go some way towards reimbursing individuals and their families for financial disadvantage suffered.

Where questionable cases exist – we demand that they are reopened and assessed by an independent and truly representative body.