A senior judge will investigate the “atrocious miscarriage of justice” that saw a man jailed for 17 years for a rape he did not commit.

Andrew Malkinson, 57, was jailed in 2003 after being wrongly accused of raping a woman from Kearsley in Little Hulton and was not freed until 2020.

His conviction was finally quashed this year and Her Honour Judge Sarah Munro KC has now been appointed chair an inquiry looking at the police, prosecutors and appeals review body’s roles in the case.

Judge Munro said: “I am honoured to be appointed to chair the Andrew Malkinson Inquiry.

“Mr Malkinson’s wrongful convictions for horrific crimes he did not commit have cost him nearly two decades of freedom, time he has been forced to spend protesting his innocence and fighting for justice, and have had a devastating impact on his life.

The Bolton News: Andrew Malkinson's case was finally quashed this yearAndrew Malkinson's case was finally quashed this year (Image: PA)

“The inquiry will focus on the police investigation, criminal trial, Mr Malkinson’s appeals and any matters that I consider relevant and important to uncovering how and why this serious miscarriage of justice took place.

“Mr Malkinson deserves the truth, and I am determined that this inquiry will be fearless and robust in seeking that truth and considering what lessons the justice system must learn.”

Mr Malkinson, originally from Grimsby in Lincolnshire, has already met with Judge Munro and with the Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice to discuss the terms of the inquiry.

The inquiry will look at the course of events from the crime itself in 2003 to the point Mr Malkinson himself exonerated by the Court of Appeal.

It will also examine the decisions made and actions taken by various people and agencies including Greater Manchester Police, the Crown Prosecution Service and the Criminal Cases Review Commission.

Once completed the inquiry will report to the Lord Chancellor, Alex Chalk.

Mr Chalk said: “Mr Malkinson suffered an atrocious miscarriage of justice and I am determined to ensure that he and the original victim get the answers they deserve. 

“I know that Her Honour Judge Munro KC, a senior and highly respected judge, will leave no stone unturned in getting to the bottom of what went wrong, so that vital lessons are learned.”

Greater Manchester Police have said that they will cooperate fully with the inquiry.

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Chief Constable Stephen Watson said: “I welcome the appointment of Her Honour Judge Sarah Munro KC as the inquiry independent chair, and the commencement of proceedings into establishing what led to the grave miscarriage of justice experienced by Mr Malkinson.

“I reaffirm GMP’s commitment to this independent non-statutory inquiry, of which our participation will be timely, transparent, and fulsome, as is expected from us by the public.

“I would once again like to apologise to Mr Malkinson for the anguish he has suffered.

“I hope that the opportunity for the relevant facts to be re-examined independently, in detail, will help him achieve the resolution he deserves.”

The Ministry of Justice says the inquiry should now be completed “without undue delay.”