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Family of murdered private investigator to meet police over case collapse

Police corruption has been linked to the failure to convict anyone for the murder of Daniel Morgan in 1987.

Undated police handout photo of Daniel Morgan.
Undated police handout photo of Daniel Morgan.
Image: Metropolitan Police/PA Archive/PA Images

THE FAMILY OF a private investigator murdered in London in 1987 are to meet with representatives of the Metropolitan Police and the Crown Prosecution Service to discuss a collapsed prosecution relating to his death.

Daniel Morgan was found dead from an axe wound in a pub car park in Sydenham, south London. His family says that he was investigating police corruption at the time of his death.

Five people have been arrested in connection with his death, but none has been convicted.

Prosecution against three men accused of killing Morgan collapsed in March 2011 after the CPS said it could not guarantee a fair trial. The family says that it was informed by the CPS at this point that there was no prospect of any further attempt at investigation or at prosecution.

The Acting Commissioner of Scotland Yard Tim Godwin apologised to Morgan’s family for failing to bring the people responsible for the murder to justice. “The Metropolitan Police Service has accepted that police corruption in the original investigation was a significant factor in this failure,” Godwin said.

Former BBC Crimewatch presenter Jacqui Hames recently told the Leveson inquiry into media ethics that she believed the News of the World paper had put her under surveillance after her husband, a police superintendent, made an appeal on the programme in July 2002 for information on the Morgan case.

In her testimony to Leveon, Hames said that police enquiries into the vans following her husband found that the vehicles were leased by the tabloid. The paper’s then-editor Rebekah Wade (now Rebekah Brooks) claimed that the couple had been placed under surveillance to investigate they were having an affair with each other.

Morgan’s family have called for a judicial inquiry into the handling of the case. The Home Secretary has yet to announce her final decision on the establishment of such an enquiry.

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“All of the available evidence indicates that Daniel was murdered because he was about to expose serious police corruption and that after his murder his private detective agency Southern Investigations became the hub of industrial-scale police/press corruption,” his brother Alastair Morgan said in a statement today.

“This was the beginning of a deeply corrupt relationship between the Metropolitan Police and News of the World journalists. We want to know how this interfered with the five subsequent investigations into the murder and the political response to allegations of police involvement in Daniel’s murder”.

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