George Davis wins right to appeal conviction - 34 years after his release
FOR years graffiti across the country declared that “George Davis is innocent - ok”.
Now George Davis’s 1975 conviction for robbery and wounding with intent to resist arrest has been referred to the Court of Appeal by the Criminal Cases Review Commission as new evidence has come to light which could clear his name, along with information which was not disclosed at the original trial which “could raise the real possibility that the court may quash the conviction”.
Mr Davis who lived in Campbell Road in Bow at the time appeared at the Central Criminal Court in March 1975 accused of robbery at the London Electricity Board in Ilford in Essex and of wounding with intent to resist arrest.
He pleaded not guilty but was convicted and sentenced to 17 years’ imprisonment for the robbery and to a consecutive three years’ imprisonment for the wounding.
After a hearing in December 1975, the Court of Appeal rejected his application for leave to appeal against conviction but cut his sentence to 17 years.
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His supporters led by his then wife Rose ran a high-profile campaign calling for his release from prison and claiming that his conviction was based on a dubious identification.
Graffiti protesting his innocence appeared on railway bridges all over the country, including in Bow Common Lane in East London.
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Another stunt saw supporters digging up the test match pitch at Headingley stopping play of a test match between England and Australia in 1975.
The following year after the interim report by Detective Chief Superintendent Moulder came out the then Home Secretary, Roy Jenkins, remitted the remainder of Mr Davis’ sentence and released him from prison but did not refer the matter to the Court of Appeal.
After his release from prison the couple split up and Rose who lived in Stepney Green died last year.
He first applied for a review of his conviction in 2001 and made a second application in 2007.
Mr Davis said today: “I am relieved that my appeal will now be fully heard by the Court of Appeal and that at long last the Court and the public will learn of the evidence obtained by Det. Chief Supt. Moulder which has been known to the authorities since 1977 but which they have refused to allow me to see for over 30 years.”