POLICE are renewing investigations into the notorious World’s End murders of 1977, under new double jeopardy laws.
Prosecutors at the Crown Office have asked Lothian and Borders Police to investigate the deaths of Helen Scott and Christine Eadie, after ‘compelling’ new evidence of guilt has emerged.
No one was ever convicted for the crime, which earned its moniker from the Edinburgh pub the two 17-year-olds were last seen in.
The Crown Office say they are liaising with the victims’ families, after the new laws mean there are more powers someone who has already been acquitted of a crime.
A Crown Office spokesperson said today: “Whilst it is not appropriate to comment or speculate on the live investigation into these murders, the public can be assured that where there is new, compelling evidence of guilt, the length of time since committal or acquittal should offer no protection.
“We are committed to using the powers under the new Double Jeopardy legislation; we hope that this commitment will give reassurance to the families of Helen Scott and Christine Eadie.”
Angus Sinclair was tried for the crime in 2007, but the case against him collapsed due to insufficient evidence.
New Double Jeopardy legislation came into power in November last year, after the 2011 Double Jeopary Act was passed.
It allows an accused to be retried if any of five conditions have been met.
These are: a tainted acquittal due to jury interference, a new confession coming to light, where new evidence emerges in a High Court case, where previous proceedings are legally null or if an injured person subsequently dies.
Other cases are currently under review by the Solicitor General, Lesley Thomson QC, which be prosecuted under the Double Jeopardy Act, the Crown Office said.