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Martinez: Everton stands shoulder to shoulder with Hillsborough families

Everton manager Roberto Martinez says the verdicts in the Hillsborough inquests have given the city of Liverpool "an incredible boost."

Speaking ahead of Everton's match against Bournemouth on Saturday, Martinez said the Hillsborough Families Support Group "showed us all the way, how to fight in life, and how to persevere" in their battle for the truth.

Hillsborough: High Court claims issued against two police forces

High Court claims have been issued against South Yorkshire Police and West Midlands Police by lawyers representing some of the Hillsborough survivors and the families of those who died.

The claims concern the cover up and actions intended to wrongly blame the deceased and supporters for the tragedy.

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Hillsborough families take class action against police

Credit: ITV News Granada Reports

Families of victims of the Hillsborough disaster are pursuing legal action against South Yorkshire and West Midlands Police.

The case, pursued by families of the 96 fans who died, accuses the police of a "systematic cover up" and "abuse on an industrial scale".

This week an inquest jury delivered a finding of "unlawful killing" over the fatal incident on April 15, 1989.

On Wednesday, the Chief Constable of South Yorkshire Police David Crompton was suspended, a move welcomed by the families of Hillsborough victims.

The legal case was issued at the High Court last year but publication of the claim was prevented until after the inquest concluded.

The action, brought by law firm Saunders Law on behalf of hundreds of those affected by the disaster, is for "misfeasance in public office".

The firm said in a statement: "In addition to the police wrongdoing that caused the deaths, there is evidence of the systematic cover up intended to transfer the blame for what happened from South Yorkshire Police to the innocent, by spreading lies, doctoring evidence, pressurising witnesses and suppressing the truth.

"The evidence points to abuse on an industrial scale by both South Yorkshire and West Midlands Police, beyond any 'one bad apple' analysis.

"In addition to actions by individuals, the evidence suggests institutional misfeasance by these bodies directed against our clients and the fans generally."

The news of the action comes after it emerged retired officers from South Yorkshire Police were told to be proud of their work in the 1980s, in a message mistakenly made public on a website in the wake of the Hillsborough inquest findings.

Merseyside MPs issue joint statement on Hillsborough

Merseyside MPs have paid tribute to the determination of those who have fought for this outcome for 27 years. Credit: ITV News Granada Reports

Following the Hillsborough verdict, whilst recognising that the decision has come years too late for many, justice has been served by the verdicts and now it is about accountability.

We recognise that it has taken the determination of families, friends and supporters of the victims to ensure that justice has been achieved.

We want to pay tribute to the hard work and determination of those who fought every step of the way to achieve this outcome which has been against all the odds.

We are also grateful to them, that in fighting for justice for the victims, their determination to show that fans did not in any way contribute to the deaths of their fellow supporters has also been fully and unequivocally vindicated.

We will also push to ensure anyone who is found to be responsible for any action that resulted in or caused, or covered up the reasons for, the deaths of so many people should face the full force of law.

We hope that the verdict, 27 years after that terrible day on 15 April 1989, will be of some comfort to the loved ones of those whose deaths could have been avoided.

– Merseyside MPS

The statement was signed by

  • Luciana Berger Liverpool, Wavertree
  • Peter Dowd, Bootle
  • Angela Eagle, Wallasey
  • Maria Eagle, Garston and Halewood
  • Louise Ellman, Liverpool, Riverside
  • Bill Esterson, Sefton Central
  • Frank Field, Birkenhead
  • Margaret Greenwood, Wirral West
  • George Howarth, Knowsley
  • Conor McGinn, St Helens North
  • Alison McGovern, Wirral South
  • John Pugh, Soputhport
  • Marie Rimmer, St Helens South and Whiston
  • Steve Rotheram, Liverpool, Walton
  • Derek Twigg, Halton
  • Stephen Twigg, Liverpool, West Derby

Mother who lost her son in Hillsborough disaster speaks on 27th anniversary

Margaret Aspinall, whose son James died at Hillsborough, has been speaking to Granada Reports on the 27th anniversary of the disaster.

His father, Jim, was also at the game but in another part of the ground. He has never been to a football match since.

As chair of the Hillsborough Family Support Group, Margaret has had to get used to the cameras, but until now her husband has never spoken publicly about it. They spoke to Lucy Meacock.

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