Lockerbie bomber Al Megrahi drops appeal

Author: PA

Lawyers for Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed Al Megrahi, who has terminal prostate
cancer, said his condition had taken a “significant turn for the worse”
in recent weeks.

He applied two days ago to the High Court in Edinburgh to abandon his appeal
against conviction, they said.

A spokesman for the legal firm Taylor & Kelly said: “As the appeal
hearing has commenced, and the court seized of the matter, leave of the
court is required before the appeal can be formally abandoned.”

The Libyan government applied in May for him to be transferred to Libya to
serve the rest of his sentence.

Britain has a prisoner transfer treaty with that country but no transfer can
be made if there are outstanding legal proceedings.

Dropping the appeal would remove this potential block.

Last month Megrahi put in a separate request to the Scottish Government to be
released on compassionate grounds.

This can be granted even if an appeal is still under way.

Reports yesterday said Scotland’s Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill is likely
to grant this request and it could happen as early as next week – before the
start of Ramadan.

But the Scottish Government insisted no decision has yet been made.

Megrahi is serving a life term, with a minimum of 27 years.

He was convicted in 2001 of bombing Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie in
December 1988, with the loss of 270 lives.

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