Two New Suspects Identified Over Lockerbie Bombing

October 15, 2015

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Scottish and US investigators have identified two Libyan suspects believed to have been involved in the Lockerbie airline bombing almost 27 years ago which killed 270 people.

Pam Am flight 103 was blown up over the Scottish town of Lockerbie on December 21, 1988 en route from London to New York. In 2001, Libyan Abdel Basset al-Megrahi was jailed for life and remains the only person to have been convicted over the bombing.

A Scottish Crown Office spokesman said the two unnamed Libyans were now suspected of being involved with Megrahi in carrying out the attack.

"The Lord Advocate has today... issued an International Letter of Request to the Libyan Attorney General in Tripoli which identifies the two Libyans as suspects in the bombing of flight Pan Am 103," the spokesman said.

"The Lord Advocate and the US Attorney General are seeking the assistance of the Libyan judicial authorities for Scottish police officers and the FBI to interview the two named suspects in Tripoli."

In 2003, former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi accepted his country's responsibility for the bombing and paid compensation to the victims' families, but he did not admit personally ordering the attack.

Megrahi, who always protested his innocence, died in Libya in 2012, three years after he was released by Scotland's government on compassionate grounds after being diagnosed with terminal cancer. His family and some relatives of the Scottish victims believe he was wrongly convicted.

In December last year, Scotland's senior prosecutor said no new evidence had emerged to cast doubt on Megrahi's conviction, but said attempts to track down accomplices had been hampered by the violence which has engulfed Libya since Gaddafi's fall.

Most of the victims of the explosion over Lockerbie were Americans on their way home for Christmas. Eleven people died on the ground as the New York-bound jet crashed when a bomb exploded in its hold 40 minutes after leaving London's Heathrow airport.

(Reuters)