Mark Duggan Inquest Opens

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‘WE HAVE been provided with nothing but lies, misinformation and delay,’ Pam Duggan, the mother of Mark Duggan said yesterday, on the opening day of her son’s inquest at the High Court in central London.

Mark Duggan was the 29-year-old black man shot dead by police in Tottenham on 4th August 2011, whose killing sparked a youth uprising which spread from London into towns and cities around the country and lasted for several days.

More than two years after her son’s death, Pam Duggan continued: ‘We hope that the truth will finally come out for the sake of all his family, not least his young children.’

The inquest at the Royal Courts of Justice has an 11-strong jury and is expected to last about eight weeks.

Mark Duggan’s brother, Shaun Hall, said the family have ‘lost faith in the police, the judiciary and the police watchdog.’

He said: ‘It is more than two years since I lost my brother, but we are no nearer to finding out what happened on the day Mark was killed and why.’

The Independent Police Complaints Commission has claimed that investigators have found no evidence of criminality by any of the armed officers involved in the shooting.

But Shaun Hall says the family has been ‘fobbed off’ by the IPCC.

‘If Mark had been killed by anyone other than a police officer we would be much further down the road by now of knowing what happened.’

He continued: ‘Since Mark was killed we have lost faith in the police, the judiciary and the IPCC. We never expected it to be easy to find out the truth about what happened to Mark but we also never expected it to be this difficult.

‘Although we no longer trust the police and the IPCC we do trust the inquest system.

‘We are going into this inquest hoping that at last we will find out the truth about what happened to Mark, that those responsible will be held to account, and that what happened to Mark will not happen to anyone else in the future.’

He added: ‘It has been reported that the IPCC inquiry, whose findings we’ve not been allowed to see, has exonerated the police officers involved in the shooting. Yet the IPCC did not interview those police officers.’

The family of Mark Duggan are represented by Michael Mansfield QC, Hugo Keith QC represents the Metropolitan Police, and Samantha Leek QC will appear for the Serious Organised Crime Agency, while Ian Stern QC will represent the armed police.

Some individual officers have legal counsel, as does the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

There will be about 100 witnesses over two months and they will include 25 police officers who will give evidence from behind screens.