Andrew Malkinson: Rape conviction of man who spent 17 years in prison overturned

A man who served 17 years in prison has had his rape conviction overturned after fresh DNA evidence emerged linking another suspect to the crime.

Andrew Malkinson was jailed for life with a minimum term of seven years after he was found guilty of the 2003 attack on a woman in Greater Manchester but stayed in jail for another decade because he maintained his innocence.

No DNA evidence linked him to the crime, with the prosecution case based solely on contested eyewitness identification.

His case was referred to the Court of Appeal in January by the Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC), on the basis of new DNA evidence that identified another suspect, who has since been arrested.

Greater Manchester Police (GMP) and the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) did not contest the appeal and the 57-year-old’s conviction has been quashed by three senior judges.

His lawyers told the Court of Appeal that his case could have “wider implications” for the criminal justice system.

Mr Malkinson, who was released from prison in December 2020 has previously called for the police to be held accountable.

‘I continue to suffer each day’

“I’ve suffered incalculably for the last 20 years as a result of my wrongful conviction, and I continue to suffer each day,” he said.

“I have always known I am innocent.”

Along with the DNA evidence, his lawyers earlier told the court photographs of the victim’s hands, which were not disclosed at the trial, corroborated her evidence that she scratched her attacker and broke a nail.

They also said there was evidence one of the key witnesses was a “long term user of heroin” – which again was not known by Mr Malkinson or his legal team at the time.

Mr Malkinson previously applied twice for his case to be reviewed by the CCRC, which investigates potential miscarriages of justice, but was turned down.

After his release, advancements in scientific techniques allowed his legal team, supported by legal charity Appeal, to provide new DNA analysis that cast doubt on his conviction to the CCRC.

The body then commissioned its own testing which found that DNA from the victim’s clothing matched another man on the national police database.

GMP confirmed in January a man had been arrested and released under investigation in light of the new information. No decision has been made as to whether he will be charged.

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