Glasgow & West Scotland

In quotes: Tommy Sheridan verdict

Tommy Sheridan
Image caption Tommy Sheridan was convicted following a 12-week trial at the High Court in Glasgow

Former Socialist Party leader Tommy Sheridan has been convicted of perjury following a 12-week trial at the High Court in Glasgow.

The verdict polarised opinion both in the court room itself and on the streets of Glasgow.

Here, figures who were involved in the case and those from Scotland's political arena give their reaction to the guilty verdict.

Trial judge, Lord Bracadale

You have been convicted of a serious offence of perjury and must expect a jail sentence.

Tommy Sheridan, statement read by Aamer Anwar

For three years my wife and I have faced charges of perjury. Today, I was convicted and Gail was acquitted of any crime. I have fought the power of News International all my political life and I make no apologies for taking on the might of Rupert Murdoch.

Several million pounds of public money was spent investigating me and my wife.

Is it not time that similar resources were devoted to investigating the activities of the News of the World?

Gail Sheridan

I would like to thank everybody from across Scotland for their wonderful support throughout the last six years that they've given to Tommy and I.

Our family and our real friends, our real friends, have stood by us. I have and will always stand by Tommy.

Alice Sheridan, Tommy Sheridan's mother

Tommy copes with everything, [Gail] will cope very well too. We're all a family, we'll stick together.

I'll cope - that's my son, he's done nothing but good for people all his life. I'll cope with that.

Paul McBride, Gail Sheridan's lawyer

He chose to defend himself and that is his right. I suspect there are a number of things he will come to regret in relation to this particular trial and I think that will be one of them.

One would imagine a very significant custodial sentence is liable to be imposed in this case, because when you're convicted of perjury in the highest court in the land, normally a prison sentence is measured in years rather than months.

Graeme McIver, Solidarity Scotland's Socialist Movement

Tommy Sheridan's only crime has been to speak truth to power for as long as he has been involved in socialist politics.

Scottish Socialist Party

The idea that there was a conspiracy involving Rupert Murdoch, Lothian and Borders Police and the SSP is nonsense and yet this is the narrative that Tommy Sheridan's supporters publicly promoted for the past four years.

By his actions over six years, Tommy Sheridan has disgraced himself and negated his political contribution to the socialist cause over 25 years. History will now record that he did more harm to the socialist cause in Scotland than any good he ever did it.

Det Ch Supt Malcolm Graham, Lothian and Borders Police

The force has a duty to make proportionate and reasonable inquiries into allegations of criminal misconduct which are brought to its attention. At every stage of the investigation, Lothian and Borders Police acted on the direction of the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service.

All of the evidence from the civil action brought by Mr Sheridan was considered, and inquiries made it clear that perjured evidence had been given during the civil hearing. I would like to acknowledge the hard work of the police officers and police staff who helped to bring this inquiry to a successful conclusion.

Carolyne Leckie, former Sheridan colleague and MSP

If Tommy had taken our advice six years ago, he wouldn't be facing a jail sentence and people would have forgotten about it. I think the socialist movement in Scotland has been very seriously damaged and Tommy is the one who's culpable for doing that. That's his biggest crime.

Bob Bird, editor of Scottish News of the World

We are pleased that justice has been done and that Mr Sheridan's perjury has been proved. As is now clear, Mr Sheridan lied to a court to secure victory when he sued the News of the World for defamation in 2006.

We have an appeal lodged against that defamation verdict and we now look forward to that appeal succeeding in Scotland's Court of Session.

Meanwhile, we thank the police for the thoroughness of their investigation and the jury for the care they took in listening to testimonies from some 40 prosecution witnesses.

These witnesses came from all walks of life, social classes and political views. Most were not News of the World readers. Many bravely exposed their lives to public scrutiny and we praise their steadfastness.

The News of the World has a proud history of exposing the hypocrisy and lies of the powerful. Today's verdict is a vindication of good investigative journalism. We hope and expect our successful appeal to bring an end to this matter.

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