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New probe into Hillsborough confirmed

19 December 2012 10:37

Home Secretary Theresa May announced on Wednesday a new inquiry into the Hillsborough disaster.

The new investigation will focus on the 96 supporters who died during and in direct relation to the 1989 tragedy, and will be helmed by the recently retired Durham Chief Constable Jon Stoddart with cooperation from the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).

"The findings of the Hillsborough Independent Panel were truly shocking, but while the families have now been given the truth, they have not yet received justice," May said.

"Jon Stoddart is a skilled and dedicated investigator who will bring a huge amount of policing experience to this demanding job.

"I am giving the IPCC new powers to investigate police misconduct, but this investigation will ensure no body with responsibility for fan safety at Hillsborough will escape scrutiny.

"I am determined to see a swift and thorough response to the findings of the Hillsborough Panel to deliver justice for the 96 football fans who died and the families who have fought so hard on their behalf."

The new investigation will not be allowed to include current or past officers who have had any connection to the Hillsborough disaster, or any who have worked for Merseyside, West Midlands or South Yorkshire forces.

In addition, police will not be able to investigate other police so any findings pertaining to the misconduct of officers during the inquest will be passed on to the IPCC.

Stoddart added: "I am aware of the great significance and personal responsibility which comes with leading this criminal investigation.

"My first priority is to meet with as many of the families as possible and to establish a working open relationship with them throughout the investigation.

"My role is to ensure that we determine exactly what happened in the lead up to and on the day of the disaster and establish where any culpability lies."

Attorney General Dominic Grieve had asked the High Court to dismiss verdicts of accidental death on the victims, with the publication of the report into the tragedy concluding that more than 160 police statements had been altered and that 'strenuous attempts' had been made to deflect the blame of the disaster onto the fans.

Kenny Dalglish, Liverpool's manager at the time of the tragedy, hailed the decision to quash the original inquest verdicts.

"Two fantastic results today for the Hillsborough families. Your support has been unbelievable," Dalglish tweeted.

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
8 5 +1 7
9 5 +0 6
10 5 -1 6
11 4 +3 5
12 4 -1 5

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