Sam Hallam: I just want to go home

Sam Hallam left court by the back door today to avoid the media scrum after he was formally cleared of murder and said: “I just want to go home.”

There were cheers and shouts of “justice is done” as Lady Justice Hallet DBE quashed his murder conviction at about 1pm today, seven years after he was put behind bars.

The 24-year-old spoke only in the corridor outside courtroom eight as he left with his mum Wendy Cohen.

But in a statement read out by his campaign manager Paul May outside the Royal Courts of Justice, he said: “I don’t want anyone else ever to suffer what I have been through since October 2004.”

He added: “The identification evidence against me was so unreliable it should have never been put to the jury.

“The Metropolitan Police should have followed up leads which would have proved my innocence of the terrible murder of Essayas Kassahun.

“They should have disclosed all the relevant evidence in their possession to my lawyers and they didn’t.

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“I now need time to recover with my family and friends from the nightmare I’ve suffered for the last seven and a half years.

“Justice has long been denied to me but it has now finally prevailed.”

Mr Hallam, who is now cleared of the 2004 murder of Essayas Kasshunon in Bath Street, Finsbury, also thanked everyone who has supported him throughout his ordeal.