Two high ranking ex-law officers have called for a public inquiry into the case of a man jailed for a rape he did not commit.

Andrew Malkinson, now 57, spent 17 years in prison after being convicted of raping a woman from Kearsley in Little Hulton in 2003.

After being freed in 2020 his conviction was finally quashed last month and former solicitor general Lord Edward Garnier KC has now expressed his “jaw-dropping shock” over the case.

Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, he said: “It seems to me that what we need now is complete and utter disclosure, public disclosure, of every document that relates to this case, save those which if disclosed would impede the prosecution of a new suspect, and there should be a public inquiry which should reach conclusions about what went wrong, who knew what and when, within a sixth-month period.”

The Bolton News: Andrew Malkinson was wrongly jailed for 17 yearsAndrew Malkinson was wrongly jailed for 17 years (Image: PA)

His call for a public inquiry was backed by another ex-solicitor general and former justice secretary Sir Robert Buckland.

Speaking to Radio 4’s World at One, Sir Robert said: “All agencies involved in this have some explaining to do, so we understand precisely what happened.

“Until we have that proper inquiry, I don’t think we’ll get to the bottom of what on earth went wrong in this case.”

Mr Malkinson’s conviction was overturned after DNA potentially linking another man to the crime was identified.

Case files obtained by 57-year-old Mr Malkinson as he battled to be freed show that police and prosecutors knew forensic testing in 2007 had identified a searchable male DNA profile on the rape victim’s vest top that did not match his own.

No match was found on the police database at the time and no further action was taken.

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A CPS spokesperson said: “It is clear Mr Malkinson was wrongly convicted of this crime and we share the deep regret that this happened.

“Evidence of a new DNA profile found on the victim’s clothing in 2007 was not ignored.

“It was disclosed to the defence team representing Mr Malkinson for their consideration.

“In addition, searches of the DNA databases were conducted to identify any other possible suspects. At that time there were no matches and therefore no further investigation could be carried out.”