New Hillsborough statements claims

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Respects paid at the Hillsborough memorial outside Anfield on the 24th anniversary of the disaster. Pic by Alice Kirkland

Respects paid at the Hillsborough memorial outside Anfield on the 24th anniversary of the disaster. Pic by Alice Kirkland

The Independent Police Complaints Commissions has announced that more police statements relating to the Hillborough disaster may have been altered.

The IPCC is probing the deaths of 96 Liverpool FC fans in the 1989 tragedy, and the Hillsborough Independent Panel originally found 164 police statements had been changed.

However, the IPCC’s latest find has led investigators to believe they have “identified a further 55 officers whose statements appear to have been altered”.

Families of Hillsborough victims, alongside the Hillsborough Justice Campaign, have battled for more than 20 years to uncover the truth about the disaster, and eventually succeeded in having the original accidental death verdict quashed by the high court.

The Hillsborough Independent Panel report, released in September 2012, revealed that police had made “strenuous attempts” to shift the blame for the disaster on to Liverpool fans.

From the originally identified altered statements, 116 were found to have had negative comments about the police removed or amended.

Deborah Glass, deputy chair of the IPCC said: “We will begin interviewing those officers this month. In addition, we have identified more statements that have been altered.”

Glass went on to say that it is essential more witnesses come forward to help the investigation. She said: “The IPCC knows the people who have contacted us are the tip of the iceberg.

“Therefore preparations are ongoing for an appeal for witnesses to the disaster and this is expected to be conducted in the autumn.”

About Josh Parry, JMU Journalism