A senior army officer described by high court judges as an unreliable witness, and allegedly accused of asking his staff to lie on oath, has retained a top post within the military police, the Ministry of Defence confirmed today.
Colonel Dudley Giles was a key MoD witness in a military police investigation that dismissed claims that British soldiers mutilated and murdered civilians in Iraq. A review by Greater Manchester police subsequently concluded the investigation failed to collect forensic evidence and ignored key Iraqi witnesses.
The MoD said today that Giles would keep his rank of Deputy Provost Marshal – second in command of the Royal Military Police – despite withering criticism last year from high court judges, but he will no longer be responsible for investigations. Were he to again appear as a witness in similar proceedings, the judges said: "It is our view that any court seized of those proceedings should approach his evidence with the greatest caution."
When Giles was asked last year why he had not referred in a witness statement to a document that disclosed British soldiers had detained between 10 and 12 Iraqis, Giles told the high court that he did so to avoid prejudicing any future prosecution. "When this assertion was examined, it became obvious that it was wholly without foundation," the judges said. Rabinder Singh, QC for the families of the Iraqis, told the high court: "[Giles] did not tell the truth".
Emails, subsequently leaked, allegedly show that Giles told his staff to change their witness statements