Man’s prison hell after being wrongly jailed for murder he didn’t commit
A man wrongly jailed in one of Britain’s worst miscarriages of justice says his life is still hell – 33 years after being freed.
John Actie’s nightmare began when he became one of the innocent black and mixed-race “Cardiff Five” arrested for the 1988 butchering of a sex worker.
The tormented 60-year-old, who spent two years in custody before being freed amid global outrage, said: “My life hasn’t been normal for 30-odd years.
“It’s never going to be the same, even after all these years and the dust has settled.
“I was wronged, the detectives got away with it – I’m always going to be angry.”
Despite an e-fit of a white suspect being released, John and four other young men were collared for the Valentine’s Day murder of Lynette White.
Lynette, who was 20, was stabbed 50 times at her flat in the Butetown district of Cardiff, known as Tiger Bay. She was brutally attacked as she attempted to fight off frenzied client Jeffrey Gafoor in a row over £30. Former rising rugby star
John – one of the three surviving members of the Cardiff Five – says the pain of the betrayal lives on.
He added: “There are loads of things that remind me of what happened, not just the flat.
“The police coming behind me in the car – my stomach goes over.”
John’s tragic story features in a new three-part documentary for BBC Wales called A Killing In Tiger Bay.
The four other men charged alongside John were Tony Paris, then 30, Stephen Miller, 22, plus John’s cousin Ronnie Actie, 30, and Yusef Abdullahi, 26, who have both since died.
Stephen, Tony and Yusef were each sentenced to life after a 17-day trial, convictions that were not quashed until 1992.
A £30million investigation into whether 13 South Wales Police officers perverted the course of justice collapsed in 2011 when documents went missing.
Gafoor, 38 when he murdered Lynette, was jailed in 2003 after DNA linked him to the killing.
He was deemed “not suitable” for release in June when his third bid for parole was rejected.
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