Jean Charles de Menezes - Murder, Lies & A Massive Cover-up
A cascade of blatant lies from the very top down -- from Metropolitan Police Commissioner Ian Blair to the trigger-happy plain-clothes CO19/SO19 officers -- have now been exposed as a cover-up of an horrific catalogue of failures that led to the police-murder of an innocent Brazilian man at Stockwell Underground station.
Damning witness reports, police statements, and photographs of the aftermath of the murder of innocent Jean Charles de Menezes on 22 July have been leaked from the IPCC investigation into the incident, finally exposing the lies designed to cover up a series of catastrophic failings in police procedure, intelligence and basic common sense.
The de Menezes Murder - The Facts
The facts about the murder of Jean Charles de Menezes such as they slowly and disparately appeared in various news reports since 22 July have now flooded into the public domain, courtesy of ITV News, with full confirmation of the extent of the incompetence demonstrated at every level of the police, security and intelligence services.
Here are a few of the initial stories (read: blatant lies) that were spun and which had already been proven to be false:
- de Menezes was not an illegal immigrant, or an illegal electrician.
- de Menezes did not vault over ticket barriers.
- de Menezes was not carrying a bag, or wearing a rucksack.
- de Menezes, horrifically, was not challenged by police.
- de Menezes did not run from the police that did not challenge him.
- de Menezes was not wearing a padded jacket that concealed a bomb, but instead a denim jacket that concealed nothing.
- de Menezes was not wearing a "bomb belt with wires coming out of it" as described by Anthony Larkin, a possible Metropolitan Police Forensic scientist who, coincidentally, gave the only statement that would provide, albeit tenuously, some justification for the shooting.
Some more facts that have emerged with the leaked documents:
- de Menezes was not positively identified at any point during the surveillance operation, save for a last-minute and totally incorrect 'positive ID' that resulted in his murder by two plain-clothes police officers.
- de Menezes flat was staked out by a surveillance team, complete with an armed response unit, all with orders to not allow de Menezes to enter the Underground system.
- Channel 4 News said that Flat 21 was under surveillance. de Menezes lived in Flat 17.
- de Menezes did not know he was under surveillance by armed police.
- The officer charged with operating the camera trained on the front door of the flats was preoccupied with relieving himself so no positive identification was made.
- de Menezes was allowed to board a Number 2 bus to Stockwell station. Odd considering the instructions were to stop him as soon as possible. That the surveillance and armed units outside the block of flats in which de Menezes lived did not stop him when he exited the block flats, nor before he boarded the bus, much less entering the Underground system, raises far more questions than it answers.
- de Menezes entered the Underground system using his Oyster Card, not by leaping over ticket barriers.
- de Menezes was not in a hurry and was walking at a normal pace.
- de Menezes descended to the train platform in a perfectly normal manner, stopping along the way to pick up a free newspaper.
- At no point did the plain clothes and armed officers identify themselves to de Menezes.
- de Menezes boarded a train and found a seat before he was bundled and bear-hugged by one officer, reported as being a lone surveillance officer, as others launched a barrage of bullets at the innocent man. Who was the lone surveillance officer?
- A total of 10 shots were fired by two officers.
- Of the 10 shots that were fired, 7 were fired by one shooter and 3 by another.
- 8 of the bullets hit the innocent target, 7 in the head and one in the shoulder.
- 'Mongolian eyes' made de Menezes a target in the absence of a positive ID.
A Catastrophic Collection of Failures At All Levels
The surveillance operation which involved various police and intelligence services, including the Special Reconnaissance Regiment which was only set-up in April of this year, and their involvement in the killing of de Menezes provides us with some testament as to quite how 'special' their 'reconnaissance' abilities are and how well the intelligence and security services work when required.
A senior police source last night told the Guardian that the leaked documents and statements gave an accurate picture of what was known so far about the shooting.
The IPCC stated: "Our priority is to disclose any findings direct to the family, who will clearly be distressed that they have received information on television concerning his death."
Perhaps they should have been a bit quicker off the mark as the de Menezes family have already announced their complete loss of confidence in the police investigation. It wasn't enough to take from them a beloved family member, now the authorities are adding further insult to injury.
As every single authority that has been indicted by these leaked documents declines to comment on their damning indictment, the evidence for abandoning the recently implemented shoot-to-kill policy, disarming the police further, and removing the powers that allow them to shoot innocent people is now stronger than ever.
Update: Channel 4 News report from last night is online and downloadable for offline viewing [Windows Media File].
Update April 2006: Did Ian Blair know an innocent man had been killed? See Ian Blair 'clear' (aka 'Liar'). See also, "de Menezes Murder: IPCC report leaks more evidence of a cover up" and "de Menezes Murder: IPCC Investigation Number 2".