Victims of Horizon scandal call for prosecutions after ITV Post Office drama

Alison Hall, who ran a post office in West Yorkshire, and her partner Richard Walker. Credit: ITV News

A former sub-postmistress wrongly convicted during the Post Office fraud scandal is calling for those responsible to face justice.

Alison Hall, from Liversedge in West Yorkshire, was fired from her job at Hightown Post Office on Christmas Eve in 2010 and convicted of false accounting and was sentenced to a community order.

She was one of 2,700 sub-postmasters and mistresses wrongly accused of stealing money following a fault in the Post Office's Horizon computer system.

Ms Hall told ITV News: "One day it's all going to come out and we'll all rejoice knowing that somebody's going to get prosecuted for what happened.

"It's their turn. Their turn - not ours."

Her comments come after the release of ITV drama, Mr Bates vs the Post Office, telling the story of the scandal.

Ms Hall said: "It brought back a few memories of how they treated us and it's been awful, totally awful.

"I was told it was just me. 'Nothing's ever happened like this, you're the only one' I was told. But look at us - it was just a lie wasn't it."

Janet Skinner was sentenced to nine months in prison and served three.

In 2021, dozens of former Post Office employees had their convictions quashed at the Court of Appeal, including Janet Skinner, from Bransholme in Hull.

She was sentenced to nine months in prison in 2007 over an alleged shortfall of nearly £60,000.

Ms Skinner told ITV News: "You stand in front of a judge and they just see you as a thief. He thought I was pickpocketing from pensioners.

"We’ll never get that time back and we'll have to live with what’s happened and try and move on."

She added that the ITV drama means "people will understand what we’ve been up against for the past 20 years".

Harjinder Butoy was given a three year and three month sentence.

Another victim reliving his trauma is Harjinder Butoy, who ran a post office in Sutton-in-Ashfield in Nottinghamshire.

He served 18 months in prison before he was released and is still waiting for compensation.

Mr Butoy told ITV News: "I do like seeing it on TV, but it does hurt a lot.

"A lot of people know what we've been through, but the drama means they can physically see what happened to us."

A Post Office spokesperson said:  "We’re doing all we can to right the wrongs of the past, as far as that is possible, and to date we have made offers of compensation totalling more than £124 million to around 2,400 Postmasters."

A public inquiry is underway to establish if anyone linked to the Post Office and Fujitsu, who created the Horizon system, could be held responsible for the wrongful accusations.

The Post Office spokesperson added: "Those people should be held to account".

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