NEWS FROM THE CELTIC LEAGUE
The body of Private Cheryl James from Llangollen was exhumed last month ahead of a second inquest into her death and metallic fragments were removed for forensic examination. The exhumation took place at the family’s request.
Pte James was one of a number or recruits who died in suspicious circumstances whilst undergoing initial training at Deepcut Army base. She was found with a bullet wound to her head in November 1995.
Her body was reburied after a short ceremony with the close family present.
The “metallic fragments” recovered will be analysed by a ballistics expert.
Last year, High Court judges ordered a fresh inquest into her death after they quashed an open verdict recorded in December 1995.
The family of Pte James, believe she did not commit suicide and have campaigned vigorously for a new inquest. The full inquest, which is expected to last seven weeks, will last several weeks and will consider whether a third party was involved in Pte James’s death and what happened on the evening before she died.
It will also address whether there were “shortcomings” with barrack policies on sexual behaviour, supervision of young females, drugs, alcohol and accommodation.
Des James, Cheryl’s father has said:
“There are serious questions that have not been answered and some evidence to suggest uncertainty as to the origin of the bullet.”
He also said he thought there was injustice in terms of the other three suspicious Deepcut deaths.
The striking thing about the deaths is the age of those involved two were just 17 and Cheryl James was just18 at the time of her death.
The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child defines a child as someone ‘under the age of eighteen’ and these cases must call into question the MOD policy of recruiting very young people into the armed forces and also using cadet forces to foster militarism amongst schoolchildren.
Issued by: The Celtic News
THE CELTIC LEAGUE INFORMATION SERVICE
The Celtic League established in 1961 has branches in the six Celtic Countries. It promotes cooperation between the countries and campaigns on a range of political, cultural and environmental matters. It highlights human rights abuse, military activity and socio-economic issues