BARRY George – the oddball cleared of murdering TV beauty Jill Dando after serving eight years for the crime – has been REFUSED compensation for his time behind bars.
Despite a “not guilty” verdict in George’s retrial, Government law chiefs REJECTED his massive £1.4 million claim with a shock ruling that he has not proven his innocence.
George – known in his London home patch as “the local weirdo” with convictions for attempted rape and incecent assault – demanded the huge sum as payback for lost earnings, wrongful imprisonment, stress and destruction of character.
But a source close to him revealed: “The Ministry of Justice have totally blown Barry out of the water.
“They wrote and told him he’ll be getting absolutely NOTHING as he has no reputation to damage and hasn’t PROVED he’s totally in the clear.
“But now his lawyers are arguing that he’s been found NOT GUILTY in court. What more does the Government want?”
George’s solicitor Nick Baird said: “We are astounded and astonished by the decision.” He revealed they are now gunning for Justice Secretary Jack Straw, seeking a judicial review in a bid to reverse the no-compo ruling.
And there’s more bad news for 50-year-old George – Whitehall officials have concluded he OWES the state £40 a day for his bed and board while inside. Jobless George was banking on a speedy payout from the Government.
But even when his original figure was cut to £250,000, allowing for the bed and board, it was turned down in the light of cops having found no evidence pointing to a new suspect.
Our source said: “This has come as a massive blow to Barry. “He has nothing and has been planning his whole future around this compensation cash.” Friends say he has been househunting but has had to put the idea on hold. In 2001 George was found guilty of murdering BBC Crimewatch presenter Jill, shot dead on her Fulham doorstep in 1999, a few streets from where he lived.
After two appeals he was granted a retrial in August 2008, at which the judge ruled out evidence that a particle of firearms discharge residue was found in George’s coat pocket. Mr Justice Griffith Williams was told that the speck, although of the same type as found on the victim, could have come from other sources. The jury of eight women and four men unanimously cleared George.
They had heard evidence from 14 women who said George had followed them or frightened them as they walked home. But jurors were not told of his earlier sex convictions or bizarre behaviour, including a 1983 incident when he was caught lurking by Kensington Palace wearing combat camouflage gear, carrying rope and a 12-inch knife, hoping to vist Princess Diana.