Raymond Gilbert Biography Raymond Gilbert Wiki
A convicted murderer Raymond Gilbert who was jailed for 36 years on “false confessions” has launched a new offer to have his name cleared after his release.
Murderer who served 36 years says new evidence could clear name https://t.co/HTsrdwW9Uu
— Raymond Gilbert (@JusticeSetUp) November 22, 2020
Raymond Gilbert from Toxteth was convicted of murdering John Suffield Junior
Raymond Gilbert from Toxteth was convicted of murdering John Suffield Junior in one of Merseyside’s most notorious murders
John, 23, was stabbed 19 times in the Coral Racing store, where he worked on Lodge Lane in 1981.
Within three days Ray, 62, was arrested for murder and soon after charged with his co-accused, John Kamara.
None of the men could be linked to the scene, no forensic evidence and no identification by witnesses – and since then even the victim’s father has raised doubts about Ray’s guilt.
The only thing the detectives had was a confession from Ray, which his legal team said had been spoiled after being questioned for 48 hours without a lawyer present. The interviews or confessions were also not recorded.
During the interrogation, Ray changed his statement several times and as soon as he was allowed to speak to a lawyer, he protested his innocence.
Ray and his legal team are now fighting to have his conviction overturned, saying there is new evidence that his confession “was not worth the paper it was written on.”
Attorney Maslen Merchant of the Hadgkiss Hughes & Beale law firm
Attorney Maslen Merchant of the Hadgkiss Hughes & Beale law firm told ECHO he is representing Ray and working on the case on appeal.
While his team have not yet been able to provide the exact details of the new evidence, it is believed to be a psychiatric report showing that Ray has signs of a personality disorder that could explain a “false confession”.
The team will also argue that Ray also has a speech impediment which is worsened in stressful situations, and he is described as “vulnerable.”
“It wasn’t me, I wasn’t there, I was in bed with my alibi.”
Speaking to ECHO, the Ray said, “I’m not guilty. I did not do it.
“My name came to the police because I was a petty criminal, I was on bail for theft, but I did not commit the murder.
“I was arrested Monday afternoon and asked why I was arrested. They didn’t even tell me.
“They came to me immediately to question me with the good, the bad policeman. But their attitude was that they had the right person from the start.
“I’m thinking about what’s going on here, why are you telling me this stuff, what do you want from me?”
“I couldn’t speak properly at this point because I have a speech problem. When I’m stressed, I can’t speak properly. Some words are not pronounced correctly.”
Ray said he also had an alibi, adding: “It wasn’t me, I wasn’t there, I was in bed with my alibi. The only time I left the house was was to go to the stores to get a log for the fire and fire starters.
“And I had to register, if I was in charge, why should I register?”
“Yes, I admitted to the police station after coercion and without legal representation, but I didn’t.”
Ray pleaded not guilty at the start of the trial, but subsequently changed his guilty plea.
He and John Kamara were sentenced to life imprisonment and served at least 15 years.
The case took a turn in 2000 when Ray’s co-accused John had his conviction overturned by the appeals court after serving 19 years.
However, Ray was denied release due to his previous confession of guilt.
John Suffield Snr, the victim’s father, also called for Ray’s release from prison in 2007.
He told the BBC’s Inside Out program: “I think it’s time for Raymond Gilbert to get out of jail. I think he has enough time.”
“More than half of your life has been in prison for a long time and someone should take action to resolve Raymond Gilbert’s future.
“If he knocked on my front door now, I would see him at my house.”
“He has served the required deterrence sentence and I don’t know what he has done in prison over the past 12 years, long after his scheduled release.”