The campaign first came into existence shortly after Siôn Jenkins was convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment in the summer of 1998.
Supporters of this campaign come from all over Great Britain, and from overseas.
They are of all ages and from varied social backgrounds.
They are linked by a common concern that the truth about the case should be heard.
After the first trial, there were regular mailings to members of the support group to inform them of developments and bring news of Siôn Jenkins’ situation while he remained in prison. He received hundreds of cards and letters of encouragement from people concerned with his welfare.
Since the campaign first started:
- The support group grew significantly each year — until it was suppressed in August 2004.
- Supporters lobbied politicians, the Home Office and the office of the Lord Chief Justice.
- Thousands of signatures were collected in support of Siôn Jenkins.
- There was a surge of new support group members after the attempt to take the case to the House of Lords was turned down and the conflict of interest involving one of the appeal judges became public knowledge.
The unease felt by many hardened into disbelief and serious concern, particularly after what emerged in the BBC’s Trail of Guilt programme about police handling of this case.
- After the programme was screened a number of specialists came forward to offer their expertise. Their concern was triggered by the implausible version of events presented in the programme.Their only interest was the truth.
- After the first appeal members of the general public were very disturbed by the undisclosed conflict of interest which was exposed.
- Concerns were expressed to the Lord Chancellor’s office about the judges’ failure to disclose possible bias.
Today there is vastly increased public awareness of the unacceptable events connected with the arrest, charging and conviction of Siôn Jenkins.
It is a matter of deep concern that his support campaign was effectively silenced after the successful second appeal in 2004.
Before this happened campaigners had kept up an unrelenting drive to inform and to question, so that the truth could be revealed. Today, so many years after Siôn Jenkins’ acquittal, there is still public concern that Billie-Jo’s killer has not yet been found.
In every respect, the case of Siôn Jenkins can only undermine public confidence in the workings of the criminal justice system.