Village postmaster: "I didn't kill my wife."

10 years ago this month, the North Yorkshire village of Melsonby, near Scotch Corner, was rocked by the murder of its postmistress.

Forty year old Diana Garbutt was bludgeoned to death in her bed - her husband Robin blamed masked armed robbers. But then he was charged with his wife's murder . There was no physical evidence to link him to the killing, but a jury found him guilty and he was jailed for 20 years.

Murdered postmistress Diane Garbutt Credit: Family photo

Now from behind bars, Robin Garbutt has launched a new bid to clear his name claiming he is the victim of a miscarriage of justice - but his wife's mother remains convinced that her own son-in law is guilty.

Robin Garbutt's latest bid to clear his name is a submission to the Criminal Cases Review Commission - the CCRC.

It was set up in the wake of miscarriage of justice scandals like the Birmingham Six case. It is the only organisation that can refer cases back to appeal courts, where a new trial could be ordered or a criminal conviction even quashed.

Robin Garbutt was found guilty of killing his wife by a jury and sentenced to 20 years in prison Credit: ITV Yorkshire

But for a case like Robin Garbutt's to be referred to the appeal court, the CCRC will almost always need to identify some new evidence or other new issue that might provide grounds for a fresh appeal.

The commission says it cannot perform a ‘re-run’ of a trial just because the evidence of the defence was not accepted by the jury and the evidence of the prosecution was.

Robin Garbutt claims there is new evidence. One key question his defence team has raised is about DNA on the murder weapon.

The murder weapon Credit: ITV Yorkshire

Diana Garbutt was bludgeoned to death with a metal bar.

Two days after the murder, it was found by a police officer on a wall across the road from the post office.

When it was swabbed, scientists found DNA from one unknown male and a police officer. New experts instructed by Garbutt's defence team say the same officer's DNA may well be among mixed DNA samples found in the rust on the pillow on Diana Garbutt's bed. But the officer was not on duty on the day of the murder. Robin Garbutt's defence team suggest that, at best, evidence has been seriously contaminated.

The CCRC will not comment on the case, other than to state it has rejected two previous applications by Robin Garbutt, but is now considering a third.

The vast majority of submissions that come before the Commission are rejected. In fact just 2.5% of cases are referred by the Commission to the appeal court. It is currently considering 530 cases and a further 170 are awaiting consideration.