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Date: 7 June 2006

Retract call for fingerprint bureau closure - UNISON

The confirmation that the Metropolitan Police have confirmed the accuracy of a palm print identification made by the Glasgow Bureau of the SCRO was welcomed by UNISON, the union representing the staff of the bureau. After the identification was challenged by fingerprint experts who have previously challenged the bureau over the Shirley McKie print, it was given to an outside bureau to check.

It is understood that at least some of the accusing experts have now accepted that they made an error.

UNISON spokesperson, Kath Ryall, said:

"I hope that Alan Bayle and Alex Neill MSP will now be publicly retracting their call for the Glasgow Bureau to be shut down. It is regrettable that these public servants have been used as a political football in an ongoing campaign. This was a basic error by the independent experts and has been identified as such. We are pleased that they have accepted that error and are now looking for them to take the next step, and for Alex Neill MSP to retract his accusation of incompetence and his call for closure of the Glasgow Bureau."

Tomorrow, colleagues of the SCRO fingerprint experts will be joined by independent experts Peter Swann and Malcolm Graham who independently verified their identification of Y7 in giving evidence to the Justice 1 Committee's enquiry.

Other independent experts that disagree with the bureau's identification will also be giving evidence, including one who subsequently misidentified the palm print in the current case.

There will be a press conference with the experts and their representatives held in a Committee Room of the Scottish Parliament immediately after they have finished giving their evidence. Please contact Chris Bartter or Ken Macintosh MSP for details


For Further Information Please Contact:

Kath Ryall (Regional Organiser) 07904 341 971(m)

Chris Bartter (Communications Officer) 07715 583 729(m) or 07958 120 676(m)

Des McNulty MSP 07714 450 850(m)

Ken Macintosh MSP 07971 961 158(m)