Further written evidence
Ministry of Defence (selected submissions
Letter from the Office of the Minister
of State for Defence Procurement
Thank you for your e-mail of yesterday.
You asked about the legal basis for the actions
of the RAF Board of Inquiry and the RAF Flight Safety Manual AP3207.
I attach a copy of the relevant section extant at the time of
the crash. You may be aware that different considerations now
apply in so far as Boards of Inquiry no longer attribute negligence.
If you require a copy of the current AP3207, please let me know.
AP3207 is published "By Command of the
Defence Council", and Board of Inquiry procedure is governed
by statutory rules made under Section 135 of the Air Force Act
(AFA), known as the Board of Inquiry (Air Force) Rules, 1956.
The Rules are reproduced in Queen's Regulations (RAF), Appendix
35, and procedures are amplified in Queen's Regulations (RAF),
On the issue of judicial review I confirm that
it is the Ministry of Defence's understanding that the Board's
findings could have been subject to judicial review, but the timeframe
for this has now passed.
We are not aware of any serious suggestion to
bring this matter before the Court of Human Rights at Strasbourg,
although officials do recall this prospect being mentioned in
passing by the media some time ago. This is not, however, a matter
for the Ministry of Defence.
Finally, it remains the position of the Ministry
of Defence that it will co-operate fully with the committee once
established, and now during its formation. If it would be helpful
to you to meet officials in the Department and/or to receive a
briefing, please let me know.
4 May 2001