NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Human rights of longest-serving prisoner Arthur Duncan 'possibly breached'

The human rights of Scotland's longest-serving prisoner may have been breached, a judge has said.

Arthur Duncan, from Aberdeen, was jailed for the rape and murder of Linda Bull in Andover, Hampshire, in 1970.

Duncan - who was an 18-year-old soldier in the Royal Artillery at the time - has been behind bars for more than 43 years.

Lord Glennie, at the Court of Session, has ordered a new hearing into the case.

Duncan has argued the Scottish Prison Service failed to provide him with rehabilitation courses which could have improved his chances of gaining parole.

The judge said there was "no proper opportunity of access to any rehabilitation programmes" from April 2007 to July last year but added that his findings were provisional.

"I heard no evidence in explanation of why things had gone wrong in this way," he said.

A Scottish Prison Service spokeswoman said: "There has yet to be a final judgement on this case. Indeed, a further hearing is due to take place on this in due course.

"As it is ongoing, it would be inappropriate for us to comment on this case at this current time."

Duncan is a prisoner at Glenochil near Stirling.

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