Mike Penning: act urgently to ensure justice for the Freshwater Five isn't delayed any further

The Freshwater Five - Jamie Green, Jon Beere, Scott Birtwistle, Daniel Payne and Zoran Dresic - are four fishermen and a scaffolder  who have been in prison for a crime they did not commit since June 2011.

In this time they have each missed numerous precious moments with their families and friends, which they will never get back. In Jamie's case, being wrongfully imprisoned meant he was unable to be by the side of his dying wife Nikki during her last days. He then had to deliver the eulogy at her funeral whilst handcuffed to a prison officer.

As the Mail on Sunday has made clear, the evidence of the men's innocence is overwhelming. We presented a dossier of material to the Criminal Cases Review Commission way back in October 2014 and have supplemented it since, yet the Commission still hasn't referred the Freshwater Five's conviction to the Court of Appeal.

This is because the Commission has been chronically underfunded by successive governments. As Commission’s Chair Richard Foster put it: “Over the last decade we have had our budget cut in real terms by about a third and we have seen our workload increased by about 70%”.

Mike Penning is the Justice Minister responsible for ensuring the Commission has the resources to correct mistakes quickly. Personalise and send a message to him using the form below to demand more resources for the Criminal Cases Review Commission so that it ensure swift justice for the Freshwater Five and other prisoners in the same situation. 

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Alternatively, write to Mike Penning by letter at this address: Rt Hon Mike Penning MP, Ministry of Justice, 102 Petty France, London, SW1H 9AJ.


timeline: what the freshwater five have missed while falsely imprisoned