Interview with Tim Jones, a member of the campaign:
By Matthew Mills @Grungebassix
Campaigners are calling for a full inquiry into police conduct at Orgreave coking plant in 1984, following the success of the Hillsborough inquiry.
The Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign, chaired by Joe Rollin, is pushing for a public inquiry to “take place as soon as possible into the policing and subsequent statements recorded by police at the time”, and to seek justice for those criminalised in the aftermath of Orgreave.
Around 95 miners were arrested following a riot outside the coking plant in June 1984, where they were protesting the closure of coal pits by the National Coal Board.
The case went to trial at Sheffield Crown Court in May 1985, but collapsed after prosecutors dropped the charges.
Following the trial, many of miners who were present brought lawsuits against police officers for unlawful arrest and misconduct.
Police agreed to pay around £500,000 to those effected, but there was no inquiry into reports of misconduct and perjury in court on behalf of the police, after it was suspected that some officers may have had their statements dictated to them.
On their website, the group say that an inquiry is particularly important in the light of the recent Hillsborough verdict, which found that the 96 people killed at Hillsborough stadium in 1989 were “unlawfully killed” due to the negligence of South Yorkshire Police:
“Orgreave and Hillsborough are part of the same story. Both cases have at their heart South Yorkshire Police, and The Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign is pressing for a full and independent inquiry into what happened, just as the Hillsborough campaigners demanded an impartial investigation into the causes of the Hillsborough disaster”.
The campaign has reached out to Home Secretary Theresa May with a legal argument urging her to set up a public inquiry, but say they are awaiting her response.