originally by: BBC News
published: 18 May 2012
Barry George, who was wrongly convicted of the murder of BBC TV presenter Jill Dando, can fight a test case for compensation, a judge has ruled.
Mr George, who spent eight years in prison before being cleared after a retrial, will be one of five lead cases to be heard at the High Court. They will help establish the boundaries of what amounts to a miscarriage of justice meriting compensation. It follows a ruling at the Supreme Court last year.
Nine judges had considered appeals by three men, not including Mr George, who said they had wrongly been refused compensation after their murder convictions were overturned.
Their judgement in those cases redefined the legal meaning of what amounted to a miscarriage of justice after debating when compensation should be awarded to wrongly convicted people.
Mr George’s claim for damages for lost earnings and wrongful imprisonment was rejected by the Ministry of Justice, on the basis he was not legally entitled to compensation.
In the most recent hearing, London’s High Court Mr Justice Irwin said the five test cases would “illustrate the boundaries of the law” as it currently stands, to help settle future compensation cases.