Al-Sweady Inquiry

Ministry of Justice written question – answered on 4th February 2015.

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Photo of Lord Blencathra Lord Blencathra Conservative

To ask Her Majesty’s Government how much legal aid has been paid to Public Interest Lawyers in respect of allegations made during the Al-Sweady inquiry; and what steps they plan to take to recover such money.

Photo of Lord Faulks Lord Faulks The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice

Legal aid did not fund the Al-Sweady inquiry itself, nor did it fund the legal representation at the inquiry for the families of the Iraqi civilians who were killed.

However, the inquiry stemmed from six people bringing a civil judicial review claim against the Ministry of Defence. These challenges were funded by legal aid. Payments on account were made which amounted to £188,000.

The Justice Secretary ordered the LAA to conduct a rigorous review into the actions of Public Interest Lawyers in handling of evidence and documents relating to the Al-Sweady Inquiry. Some concerns were referred to the independent Solicitors Regulation Authority and they are now carrying out an investigation into these matters.

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