Lord Advocate instructs police to reopen decade-old murder investigation

Lord Advocate instructs police to reopen decade-old murder investigation

Police have been instructed to reopen an investigation into the murder of a woman in South Lanarkshire a decade ago.

The body of Emma Caldwell, 27, was found in the woods near Biggar in 2005.

Ms Caldwell was a heroin addict and had been working as a prostitute to fund her addiction.

The Lord Advocate, Frank Mulholland QC(pictured), has now told Police Scotland to re-open the investigation after senior officers in the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) looked at the case.

A BBC programme which looked at the police inquiry into the murder showed that a local suspect and client of Ms Caldwell’s was dropped in favour of four Turkish men who were prosecuted.

One, who was charged with the woman’s murder, sued the police for false arrest and was awarded an out-of-court settlement.

A Crown Office spokesperson said: “The Lord Advocate has instructed Police Scotland to carry out a reinvestigation into the murder of Emma Caldwell.

“The decision to reinvestigate followed careful consideration of the case by Crown Counsel - the most senior lawyers in Crown Office.

“Unresolved homicides are never closed. COPFS maintains a database of all cold case homicides and cases to which the Double Jeopardy (Scotland) Act may apply.

“The Cold Case Unit works closely with Police Scotland to review these cases to ascertain if there are any new evidential developments, including advances in forensic techniques, which would assist in providing a basis for criminal proceedings.”

Assistant chief constable Malcolm Graham said: “Police Scotland is at an advanced stage in its preparations to undertake a reinvestigation into the murder of Emma Caldwell.

“All necessary resources with the appropriate skills and experience will be deployed to ensure a thorough reinvestigation takes place.

“Senior officers from Police Scotland will be meeting with the family to outline the plans already in place and provide further information on the areas to be explored in an attempt to identify new evidential opportunities.

“Detectives will be using the most up-to-date investigative techniques, particularly those in forensics, within which there has been significant advances in recent years.

“It is hoped these advances will assist officers in the reinvestigation of the case.”

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