Tuesday, February 16, 2016
Dutchman wrongly jailed for rape is freed after TWELVE YEARS in a Spanish prison after the killer admitted to carrying out the sex attack
The Spaniards obviously hated to admit that they got it wrong. Do you have to have the real perpetrator confess before you are exonerated in Spain?
A Dutchman wrongly accused of a rape committed by British killer Mark Dixie has been freed after more than 12 years behind bars in Spain after his conviction was overturned.
The Spanish Supreme Court today quashed Romano van der Dussen's conviction for the attack carried out in August 2003, and ordered his immediate release from jail where he was wrongly serving a 15 year sentence.
The court's decision came eight months after Mark Dixie, 44, who is serving life for the savage murder of Sally Anne Bowman in south London in 2005, admitted raping a Spanish woman in a drink and drug-fuelled rage in the popular resort of Fuengirola in August 2003.
Two years later Dixie raped and murdered model Sally Ann Bowman, near her home in Croydon, South London.
Dixie made the confession to Dussen's lawyer in Durham prison in June last year. A DNA test in Holland later confirmed Dixie's link to the crime.
Dussen, 42, was arrested in Fuengirola shortly after that attack and two others, which he always denied, and was later convicted and sentenced to 15 years imprisonment.
Dixie's DNA was found at the scene of one of the attacks, but never traced by Spanish police. No DNA from Dussen was found at any of the crime scenes.
After his confession to lawyer Rachel Imamkhan, Dixie made a written three page statement which was lodged with the Spanish Supreme Court.
But Dussen had to remain in prison until the court accepted his appeal against conviction.
He had been convicted of all three of the sexual attacks in the resort and was identified by just one of the victims.
The Supreme Court judges heard during the appeal that the Dutchman bore a similar appearance to Dixie and there were only two years difference in their ages.
Last year, Dixie admitted to raping one of the women but claimed he could not remember if he carried out the other two attacks because he was high on drugs at the time.
In June, murderer Dixie confessed to one of the rapes and gave a saliva sample at HMP Frankland in Co Durham which was matched to DNA found on the first victim. Spanish police confirmed the match in a report in August.
Prosecutors at Romano's trial said the same man must have committed all three rapes, which took place within two hours of each other in the early hours of August 10 2003.
One woman was punched, thrown to the floor and raped in a terrifying 15-minute ordeal. She spent four days in hospital and suffered severe psychological problems.
Minutes later a second woman was punched in the head, thrown to the floor and sexually assaulted. The attacker fled with her Nokia mobile phone and 120 euros in cash.
The third victim was attacked a few hundred yards away; punched in the head, thrown to the floor, sexually assaulted and beaten.
Romano, now 42, was jailed for a total of 15-and-a-half years - despite the fact DNA found on the first victim did not match his - after being picked out of photographs in police files.
Romano's lengthy fight to clear his name had already suffered a series of setbacks.
Spain's Supreme Court turned down an appeal against his 2005 sentence the following year and refused to admit an appeal in July because it was 'premature.' despite long-standing evidence linking Dixie to at least one of the attacks and pointing to Romano being the victim of a miscarriage of justice.
Ms Imamkhan, legal director of PrisonLAW which specialises in overturning miscarriages of justice, said after meeting him: 'Mark Dixie confessed that in 2003 he was living in Fuengirola and he remembers committing a rape that Romano van der Dussen has been convicted of.
'He also stated that he is sorry that another person has been in prison for such a long period of time for that rape.
'A new analysis of DNA evidence carried out at the National Forensic Investigations Agency has also confirmed that Mark Dixie carried out that rape.
Sally Anne Bowman was raped and murdered near her home in Croydon in September 2005 soon after Dixie, from Streatham, south London, returned to the UK from Spain. The teenager was stabbed seven times and raped while she lay dead or dying.
Dixie was arrested the following year by chance after a fight in a pub, and was linked to the gruesome killing through his DNA.
He was jailed for life - and told he must serve a minimum of 34 years - in February 2008 after a trial at the Old Bailey.
Original report here
(And don't forget your ration of Wicked Thoughts for today. Now hosted on Wordpress. If you cannot access it, go to the MIRROR SITE, where posts appear as well as on the primary site. I have reposted the archives (past posts) for Wicked Thoughts HERE or HERE
Posted by bussorah at 1:12 AM