SATPAL RAM has spoken for the first time since his release from prison after serving 15 years for murder following a ruling by the European Court of Human Rights.
Musicians and public figures have for years been lobbying for Ram’s release, believing he acted in self-defence and was the victim of an unprovoked racial attack by the man who died, Clarke Pearce, who was white.
Ram was attacked with a broken glass during the incident in Birmingham in 1986. He produced a small packing knife used in his job as a warehouseman. Mr Pearce suffered two wounds in the back and later died after refusing medical treatment.
The Parole Board ruled in 1999 that Ram should be released on licence but the then Home Secretary, Jack Straw, refused. Ram said he will continue to fight to clear his name. He described the killing of Clarke Pearce as a “tragic accident”.
“There were two victims here. I have now spent the last 16 years of my life in prison,” he told the BBC. “Personally I feel there should be a public inquiry as to why I have been unlawfully held in prison since October 2000. The courts have ruled that the Home Secretary acted unlawfully. I therefore feel that he should now be charged with unlawful imprisonment and face the full due process of law.”