Lockerbie bomber's family to appeal conviction in UK's top court

Abdelbaset Al Megrahi's case was rejected by Scottish Appeal Court in January

Freed Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset Ali Mohmet al-Megrahi speaks to a doctor as he wears a medical and sits on a wheelchair during a meeting with an African delegation at a hospital in Tripoli on September 9, 2009. Megrahi, who was controversially granted early release on August 20 by Scottish authorities on compassionate grounds, received a 150-strong African delegation in a Libyan hospital, his first public appearance since his admission with terminal cancer, an AFP correspondent reported. AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo by MAHMUD TURKIA / AFP)
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The family of a Libyan man found guilty of the 1988 Lockerbie plane bombing that killed 270 people will seek to appeal the conviction in Britain's top court after being refused permission by the Scottish Appeal Court, their lawyer said.

Abdelbaset Al Megrahi, an intelligence officer who died in 2012, was jailed for life in 2001 for the murder of 243 passengers, 16 crew and 11 residents of the Scottish town of Lockerbie in the deadliest attack in British history.

In January, the Court of Criminal Appeal in Scotland rejected an appeal brought by his family, who had argued that there had been a possible misconduct of justice. Their lawyer, Aamer Anwar, said on Thursday the same court had now refused permission for them to appeal that decision.

"I have now instructed our legal team to seek leave to appeal directly to the UK Supreme Court, which is the final court of appeal for my father's case," Al Megrahi's son Ali said.

"I regard my father, Abdelbaset Al Megrahi, as the 271st victim of Lockerbie."

Pan Am Flight 103 was blown up over Lockerbie in December 1988 en route from London to New York, carrying mostly Americans on their way home for Christmas.

Al Megrahi, who denied involvement in the attack, died in Libya in 2012 after being released three years earlier by the Scottish government on compassionate grounds due to prostate cancer.

Former leader Muammar Qaddafi accepted Libya's responsibility for the bombing in 2003 and paid compensation to families, but did not admit personally ordering it.

However, Al Megrahi's family and some relatives of the Scottish victims have always doubted his guilt and Libya's responsibility, and say the truth has yet to come out.

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