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New inquiry into Lawrence murder could be launched

WITHELD EVIDENCE: Stephen Lawrence was murdered in 1993

HOME SECRETARY Theresa May is considering a new public inquiry into the murder of Stephen Lawrence following claims that police corruption may have protected the gang accused of killing the teenager.

Stephen, an aspiring architect, was stabbed to death by a gang of youths in a racist attack on April 22, 1993 in Eltham, southeast London.

Stephen’s mother Doreen Lawrence had made the request to May in March after allegations surfaced in The Independent that some evidence may have been withheld from the original inquiry into the Stephen’s murder.

Doreen told The Guardian: “I cannot see how Theresa May can now refuse. Not only must a new public inquiry look at whether corruption existed in the police investigation but why it was kept from us - Stephen's family.”

Lawrence wrote to May expressing her concerns about the initial murder investigation after it was alleged that one officer may have had links to the father of one of the murder suspects.

Earlier this month, London’s mayor Boris Johnson, offered his full support to Lawrence following her request to re-open the Macpherson Inquiry.

The Macpherson report, which was issued in 1999, explored the Metropolitan police’s mishandling of their investigation into the murder of Stephen.

The ground-breaking report discovered that the Metropolitan police was institutionally racist.

In a letter written to Lawrence, Johnson outlined his agreement that there are grounds for the request.

This, he said, was based on reports published in The Independent in March that claims a key member of the investigating team in the initial 1993 murder inquiry was allegedly corrupt.

“I fully support your call for an inquiry into these new allegations and I have conveyed my views of this to the Home Secretary,” Johnson wrote.

The officer named in the corruption allegation has since told newspapers he was cleared of any wrong doing.

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