Labour accuses Raab of ‘unforgivable failings’ over Harry Dunn case

10 May 2020, 12:52

The family of Harry Dunn have urged the shadow foreign secretary to call for a parliamentary inquiry into the handling of their son’s death.
The family of Harry Dunn have urged the shadow foreign secretary to call for a parliamentary inquiry into the handling of their son’s death. Picture: PA
EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

The Foreign Secretary has been accused of "unforgivable failings" over the response to the death of Harry Dunn, by his Labour equivalent.

Labour's Lisa Nandy has made the accusation against Dominic Raab over his handling of the death of Harry who was killed when his motorbike crashed into a car outside a US military base in Northamptonshire on August 27 last year.

His alleged killer, 42-year-old Anne Sacoolas, the wife of a US intelligence official, claimed diplomatic immunity following the crash

She was charged with causing the teenager's death by dangerous driving in December but an extradition request submitted by the Home Office was rejected by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in January.

Harry's parents Charlotte Charles and Tim Dunn said they felt "uplifted" after a virtual meeting with the shadow foreign secretary and hoped she would "take things forward on our and the nation's behalf".

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The Shadow Foreign Secretary wrote an article in The Mail on Sunday saying that the meeting with Harry's family "was a moment I will never forget".

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Ms Nandy said the parents' campaign "has already highlighted a string of unforgivable failings by a Government they rightly believed should have been there to support them".

She added that she was"deeply troubled by leaked communications reported by the Mail on Sunday in recent weeks that cast serious doubt on the accuracy of the Government's own timeline of events".

She added: "The Foreign Secretary's account of how the person later charged with causing Harry's death was able to leave the country, even while the police and the Crown Prosecution Service were pursuing prosecution, just does not add up."

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Responding to the criticism, the Foreign Office said: "We consistently called for Anne Sacoolas's immunity to be waived before she left the UK.

"Both the Prime Minister and the Foreign Secretary have been clear with the US that the refusal to extradite her amounts to a denial of justice and that she should return to the UK.

"We have the deepest sympathy for Harry's family. We have done and will continue to do everything we properly can to ensure that justice is done."

Ms Nandy said: "Left with little option, Harry's family has turned to the courts for help. While the Government is straining every sinew to defeat them, there is still the hope that a judgment next month will finally force ministers to be honest about the mistakes that were made and start to set this right."