Andrew Malkinson: Innocent man who spent 17 years behind bars now sleeping in a tent

The former security guard said he feels ‘betrayed very badly’ and no longer views the UK as home

Holly Evans
Saturday 30 December 2023 13:06
<p>Malkinson is now living in a tent after spending 17 years in prison for a rape he did not commit</p>

Malkinson is now living in a tent after spending 17 years in prison for a rape he did not commit

A man who spent 17 years in prison after being wrongfully convicted of rape says he is now living in a tent and on benefits as he awaits compensation for his imprisonment.

Andrew Malkinson, 57, said the UK “doesn’t feel like home” any longer, and that he feels “betrayed very badly” after he was jailed despite there being no forensic evidence linking him to the crime.

During an appearance on BBC Radio 4’s Today, he said that he had since been living in Spain with little money since his release, and had been warned it could take two years for him to receive his compensation.

“I have no job, I’m on benefits, I’m living in a tent, I’m basically homeless,” he said.

The government has since announced plans for a major inquiry to investigate why he remained in jail when DNA linking another man to the crime was uncovered by forensic scientists three years into his sentence.

Malkinson guest edited BBC Radio 4 and spoke about his experience behind bars

He had been arrested in 2003 by Greater Manchester Police for an attack on a woman in Salford and was not released until 2020 under a strict life licence. His conviction was eventually overturned by the Court of Appeal in July.

“I’ve got a bit of anger to deal with,” he said during the conversation with John McCarthy, who was imprisoned by Islamic Jihadi militants in Lebanon between 1986 and 1991.

“You can’t go through something like that and not be furious. I was angry all the time in prison, but I had to park it and process it slowly somehow in my own way. It’s a real emotional rollercoaster.”

He also added that he faced difficulties in prison while studying at the Open University, which he credited with keeping his mind busy while incarcerated.

Malkinson had his conviction for the 2003 attack in Greater Manchester quashed in July

He said: “People won’t want to hear this but the [prison] staff didn’t really like us doing higher education.

“There was resistance and made all kinds of problems over small matters that weren’t really important. I felt they were putting obstacles in the way so there was a lot of frustration, but I was determined to get through it.”

Speaking of the upcoming inquiry, Alex Chalk, the justice secretary, said that Mr Malkinson deserved “thorough and honest answers” about why it took so long to uncover the “atrocious miscarriage of justice”.

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