Today in Parliament the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Committee began to hear evidence from Post Office workers who had been affected by the Horizon scandal. Select Committees have a vital role in holding government, business and individuals to account and Lucy Allan MP is strongly supportive of the BEIS Committee's inquiry.
The Committee is undertaking a welcome enquiry into the scandal and its causes in the Horizon IT system and the institutional obstinacy of the Post Office. Lucy's constituent, Tracy Felstead, was wrongly imprisoned when a fault in the Horizon IT system declared her till to be short of over £11,000.
Whilst the High Court ruled that the convictions were wrongful and the Post Office has come to a financial settlement, many will fail to recoup their basic legal costs and still have a criminal record. The Post Office has suggested that those wishing to formally overturn their convictions must finance and undergo individual legal challenges. Lucy has been campaigning to have the convictions overturned as a group, with no further financial cost to those wrongfully convicted.
Ms Felstead's evidence will constitute important evidence in exposing the scandal and its damaging personal and financial effects on sub-Postmasters around the country.
Speaking afterwards, Ms Felstead said:
"It was a difficult experience but I am glad to have been able to speak to the Committee. The CCRC have been considering my case since 2015 - I want my conviction overturned so I can get on with my life. It's never been about the money. I can't even take my children to Disney World with a criminal conviction. I had to remortgage my house to pay the Post Office what they said they were due - I don't even know whether I will get that back."
Photo: Lucy Allan MP meets with her constituent Tracy Felstead (left) and another sub-Postmaster following the BEIS Select Committee.