Bid for release of Shrewsbury 24 papers

Shrewsbury | News | Published:

MPs were today pressing for the release of papers relating to an industrial dispute more than 40 years ago that led to pickets being jailed, amid claims of a "conspiracy of silence".

Campaigners are trying to quash convictions against the so-called Shrewsbury 24, who were arrested five months after the 1972 building workers' strike and charged under the 1875 Conspiracy Act, with six sent to prison.

A 100,000-signature petition has been delivered to the Government with campaigners claiming the charges were politically motivated with government interference in the prosecutions.

Labour MP Dave Anderson has secured a backbench debate on the case, which was being held in the Commons today. Royle Family actor Ricky Tomlinson, one of those jailed, said ahead of the debate: "Unless there is action now the ban on releasing these papers won't be reviewed until 2021."

Unite general secretary Len McCluskey said: "It is time to end this four-year conspiracy of silence and release all the government documents relating to the Shrewsbury 24."

The group wants all documents rel-ating to the case to be released, claiming they would prove a "massive miscarriage of justice".

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