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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Elaine Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Nov 2016 at 1:46pm
A British soldier has been killed and another injured during a live fire training exercise - sparking a major police investigation.

The serviceman was shot dead at RAF Tain, near Inverness, in an incident involving more than 20 military personnel.

At a press conference this afternoon, police wouldn't say if the cause of death was accidental, as they revealed that 30 detectives have been brought in to investigate.

The victim, who was not local to the north of Scotland, has yet to be named.


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3895506/Scottish-soldier-shot-dead-injured-incident-Highlands-live-firing-range.html#ixzz4OrJlBLrH
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Edited by Elaine - 02 Nov 2016 at 1:47pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Elaine Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 Nov 2016 at 6:03pm
The Ministry of Defence should lose its historic immunity from prosecution when armed forces personnel are killed during training, the Commons defence committee has said.

A detailed report by MPs, concludes that the MoD should be liable for corporate manslaughter charges when there is a serious failing in its duty of care. “The lives of serving personnel are worth no less than those of civilians and those responsible for their deaths must be equally liable under the law,” the committee said.

Between 1 January 2000 and 20 February 2016, 135 armed forces personnel died in non-combat incidents, mainly on training exercises. During that period 11 “crown censures” were recorded, the maximum sanction possible that can be issued to the MoD by the Health and Safety Executive, the body charged with overseeing workplace safety.

Yet the MoD is exempt from criminal prosecution through a privilege called crown immunity, a privilege that has prompted the longstanding criticism that it allows defence officials to avoid being held to account for its health and safety record.

The MoD received its latest crown censure last month over the deaths of three SAS recruits who suffered heat illness during a training exercise in the Brecon Beacons, Wales. However, crown immunity meant that defence officials escaped prosecution over the deaths of reservists Cpl James Dunsby and L/Cpls Edward Maher and Craig Roberts.

On Wednesday, unions claimed that six soldiers could have been killed because of defence cuts at British live firing ranges, describing how a group of Gurkhas walked into the “arc of fire” shortly before practice shooting began on a Kent training ground.

Lawyers acting on behalf of families have welcomed the findings of the defence sub-committee which also strongly endorsed the need to retain crown immunity during actual combat operations.

Hilary Meredith, chief executive at Hilary Meredith Solicitors, who gave evidence at the parliamentary inquiry and has campaigned for years to end crown immunity, said: “When mistakes happen the buck should stop at the top. For too long, the MoD as a corporation has hidden behind crown immunity.

“We are not talking about unfortunate accidents here – we are talking about a blatant disregard for life.

“It is a fact that more men and women die while training for war than in war – and this cannot be acceptable on any front. We acknowledge that training has to be realistic but not to the point of death.”

Philippa Tuckman, a partner at Hilary Meredith, who also gave evidence at the inquiry, added: “The recommendations in this report will save lives if they are followed by the government and MoD.

“It is very sad that the MoD has resisted this for so long. I hope it will now acknowledge gracefully that the tide has turned against that position and in favour of openness and equality of treatment for the members of our armed services under the law.

The chair of the sub-committee, Labour MP Madeleine Moon, said: “Where a crown censure has been issued, it should be possible to prosecute the MoD. The lives of serving personnel are worth no less than those of civilians and those responsible for their deaths must be equally liable under the law.”

While the report found no systemic failings in the policies for managing risk during training and selection events, it argued that the MoD had not always achieved the correct balance between adequate training and risk.

However, the report argues that training should remain rigorous because it was important for troops to be properly prepared for armed conflict.

Tuckman said: “This will take a culture change across all the services, but unnecessary deaths and injuries simply cannot be avoided unless it happens


Edited by Elaine - 29 Nov 2016 at 6:04pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Elaine Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Dec 2016 at 4:32pm
Soldier murder: Matthew Boyd's death 'destroyed' family

1 December 2016 Last updated at 17:49 GMT


A killer who boasted he was the "hardest man" in town has been found guilty of murdering soldier Matthew Boyd in Powys.


Pte Matthew Boyd, 20, was off-duty on a night out in Brecon when he was punched and beaten by Jake Vallely.

But the jury cleared Vallely's friend Aaeron Evans of manslaughter after Cardiff Crown Court was told he was not present during the attack.

Vallely, 24, will be sentenced on 8 December.

In a statement read by Det Con Zoe Powell after the verdicts, Pte Boyd's family said he would no longer have the future he "so richly" deserved.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Elaine Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Jan 2017 at 8:49pm
Army veteran who served in Bosnia, Kosovo and Iraq and then played a battle-scarred squaddie on West End stage killed himself after suffering PTSD
Soldier had toured Bosnia, Kosovo and Iraq during long career in the Army
He had since appeared in a play about the struggles of ex-service personnel
But he was himself diagnosed with PTSD and suffered depression, inquest hears
Father-of-one took his own life after a night out with his partner in Swansea

By Richard Spillett for MailOnline

Published: 11:14, 24 January 2017 | Updated: 11:49, 24 January 2017


Former soldier Gareth Crabb - who starred in a play about the challenges faced by ex-service personnel - took his own life after suffering PTSD, an inquest heard


Former soldier Gareth Crabb - who starred in a play about the challenges faced by ex-service personnel - took his own life after suffering PTSD, an inquest heard

A soldier who turned West End actor to highlight the plight of war veterans took his own life after suffering PTSD, a coroner has ruled.

Bombardier Gareth Crabbe was hailed in his stage performance as a battle-scarred soldier in the London play - and was applauded by actor Ray Winstone.

But an inquest heard the father-of-one was haunted by his experiences in Bosnia, Kosovo and Iraq and killed himself after being diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder.

The hearing was told Mr Crabbe, 38, died after a night out in Swansea, South Wales in June last year with his partner Danielle.

She said his mood changed during the walk back to their home and she found him dead after she briefly left him alone.

'I went to the toilet - we're talking seconds,' she told the inquest. 'I thought he had hurt himself so I ran downstairs to see what happened.'

Mr Crabbe, who served in the Royal Artillery since the age of 18, had been diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder in 2009.

The condition related to the sights he had to endure whilst with the armed forces.

He was also crushed under a two-tonne gun before he was due to go Helmand Province in Afghanistan.

The inquest heard he also became addicted to his painkillers.

Mr Crabbe had been praised by actors including Ray Winstone after appearing in the play

Mr Crabbe's wife and the mother of his son, Tina Jamieson, who he split up with in 2006 and is originally from Germany, told of his depression.

She told the inquest: 'A week before he died, he phoned me and was very distressed.'

The inquest in Swansea Coroner's Court also heard that Mr Crabbe's flat had been burgled in May of last year, which also significantly contributed to his anxiety.

'He felt violated by this burglary,' said his ex-wife Tina Jamieson.

He had suffered depression due to memories of what he witnessed on tours abroad

'He felt like he had lost the feeling of being a soldier or a man because somebody went into his flat and took some of his belongings.'

Coroner Colin Philips recorded Mr Crabbe's death as suicide.

After the hearing, Ms Jamieson said he had been 'neglected' after his 17 years in the Army.

'They just have nothing in place to look after their own people. It's not just an employee, it's a life,' she said after the inquest.

'When you're discharged from the army you do not just lose a job, you lose your home, your friends, everything.

'That's why we have homeless veterans, it's because of the lack of care - they don't learn to be civilians.'

The inquest heard that whilst serving in the army Mr Crabbe had been a part of 'Operation Telic', which was the codename for the United Kingdom's military operations in Iraq between 2003 and 2011.

There he once tried to save the lives of people who had been involved in a train collision but he was unable to help them survive.

He also attended the scene where a bus had come off a bridge - and had to endure the sight of multiple dead bodies.



Mr Crabbe needed spinal disc replacement after an incident on training, the inquest heard


He was medically discharged from the army in 2012 - but was delighted to win a place in the West End show with other injured vets in their stage unit called Bravo 22.

Actor Winstone was the show's ambassador and Gareth was also praised by actresses Barbara Windsor and Caroline Quentin

An Army spokesman said: 'The mental health of everyone who serves our country is of the utmost importance.

'Help is readily available for those with health issues due to service and we encourage those that need help to come forward and get the assistance they deserve.'

For confidential support call the Samaritans on 116123 or visit a local Samaritans branch, see www.samaritans.org for details.




Read more: Samaritans |


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4151402/Army-veteran-starred-play-took-life.html#ixzz4WoCOOD3Y
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Edited by Elaine - 25 Jan 2017 at 8:52pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Elaine Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Aug 2017 at 9:04am
Member Of British Military Arrested In Connection With Road Traffic Accident Death Of Cpl John Fernandez in Cyprus

August 1, 2017

Forces Network
The Ministry of Defence has confirmed that another soldier has been arrested in connection with the death of Corporal John Fernandez

The British soldier was knocked down and killed near Dhekelia Garrison in Cyprus.

Corporal John Fernandez, from 2nd Batallion The Princess of Wales's Royal Regiment (2PWRR), was struck by a vehicle on a coast road close to the garrison at around 8.30 on Saturday evening.
In a statement British Forces Cyprus said:
“British Forces Cyprus can confirm that a member of the British military has been arrested in connection to the road traffic incident on July 29 which resulted in the death of Corporal John Fernandez.
A thorough investigation is now underway and it would be inappropriate to comment any further at this time.”
Flowers and candles now mark the spot where Cpl Fernandez died.

Lieutenant Colonel James Skelton, Commanding Officer, 2PWRR, paid a glowing tribute to him.

“Cpl Fernandez was the finest of men and a true Tiger. He stood out from his peers as an exemplary Infantry soldier, a leader and a servant to his soldiers.

“His recent actions in response to a criminal explosive attack at a Sovereign Base Area Police Station in Dhekelia led to his nomination for a Commander British Forces Commendation, an accolade which Cpl Fernandez took with huge humility.

“His example of fitness, courage and personal discipline stand as a marker as to what we, as Infantrymen can all aspire to be.

“More importantly he was a great friend to so many in the Battalion who sought the friendship of a kind, funny and genuinely good man. His loss is keenly felt by each and every one of us.

“Along with his family and friends, the Tigers mourn his loss, but at the same time we must celebrate his memory and follow his example in life.”


Edited by Elaine - 02 Aug 2017 at 9:06am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Elaine Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Aug 2017 at 12:15am
The Ministry of Defence has confirmed the death of a British soldier in Kenya.

Sergeant David Jones, 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards, was deployed to Kenya as part of the British Army Training Unit Kenya (BATUK).

An Army spokesperson said: "We can confirm that Sergeant David Jones from 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards has died while off duty in Kenya.


“The full circumstances of the soldier’s death are under investigation and it would be inappropriate to comment any further at this time."

BATUK is a permanent training support unit based mainly 200 km north of Nairobi.

It provides training to exercising units preparing to deploy on operations or assume high readiness tasks.

The unit is made up of around 100 permanent staff and 280 short-tour personnel.


Edited by Elaine - 15 Aug 2017 at 12:16am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Elaine Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Nov 2017 at 10:23am
A soldier killed in a training exercise was shot by a colleague who mistook him for a target, a report has found.

Private Conor McPherson was critically injured during a night-time "live fire" exercise at Otterburn, Northumberland.

The Defence Safety Authority's Service Inquiry report identified a number of Army failings in the run-up to the incident.

The Army has said it "deeply regrets" the death the young soldier, which was "a terrible, terrible tragedy".

Private McPherson, 24, from The Black Watch, 3rd Battalion, the Royal Regiment of Scotland, was pronounced dead at the scene on 22 August last year.




The report stated that soldiers using live rounds had been stumbling about in the dark.

Lieutenant General Richard Felton, director general of the Defence Safety Authority, said he could not understand why the trainees were subjected to an 18-hour plus day.

It also emerged the opening day of Exercise Wessex Storm at the Heely Dod Range featured nine different shooting sequences.

'Test and challenge'

But Lieutenant General Felton said the safety risk present that night "was neither recognised - nor the potential consequences understood - by the Fire Team, supervising staff or Battalion leadership".

While it was "highly likely" Private McPherson, from Paisley, Renfrewshire, was shot by one of his colleagues, another soldier did not fire a single round because he found it impossible to identify any targets in the gloom.

Lieutenant General Felton said: "The tragic death of Pte Conor McPherson serves as a reminder of the dangers inherent in Military training."

But he added:" Military training must continue to test and challenge, with progression through a unit's training cycle correctly adding complexity and greater levels of Safety Risk.

"To not do so would reduce the value of training and the preparedness of our soldiers to fight and win in future conflicts."

Rigid targets

Private McPherson had already trained in France and Kenya by the time he joined the fatal exercise with colleagues from 3 Platoon A Company 3 Scots.

Their final mission that day was to negotiate a firing range, using live ammo as the infantrymen moved towards rigid targets, without any fixed illumination.

A reconstruction ordered by the inquiry found that the LUCIE Universal night vision goggles and ear plugs worn by Pte McPherson were not cleared for use in this type of exercise.

The probe into the incident has identified eight "contributory factors" that made the accident more likely to happen that night, including a lack of effective supervision of the soldier who fired the shot.

The investigating panel said it is highly likely a solder named only as "firer 2" - a private who had been in the military for five and a half years - misidentified Private McPherson as a target and fired the fatal round.

Colonel Jim Taylor of HQ Field Army, Training branch welcomed the inquiry's findings, saying: "It has done outstanding work to identify what went wrong.

"In particular, their reconstruction of the events that night has been invaluable in helping us identify what caused the accident and the factors which contributed to it. We are now carefully considering its recommendations.

"We care about our soldiers above all else and we do everything we can to reduce the risks to them as they conduct the essential training required to prepare them for combat operations."

A spokeswoman for Northumbria Police said:"The death is still being investigated and Northumbria Police is working with the Health and Safety Executive and the Coroner."
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