Marcus Rickard and Joshua Ellis instructed to consider the appeal of convicted double-murderer

June 30, 2023

Marcus Rickard and Joshua Ellis have been instructed in the appeal of Michael Weir who was convicted and jailed for life for the murder of two elderly people in their own homes nearly 25 years ago under the double jeopardy law.

Mr Weir was convicted initially in 1999 for the murder of Mr Harris. He appealed the murder conviction on the basis that the police had at the time unlawfully kept his DNA on their database. Subsequently, the Court of Appeal quashed his conviction with the CPS missing the deadline to appeal that decision in the House of Lords.

A retrial was not possible until the double jeopardy law changed in 2015 allowing for those acquitted of murder to be re-tried where new and compelling evidence was found. Mr Weir stood trial again in 2019 for the murder of Mr Harris and also a second person, Ms Seferian, and was found guilty of both murders.

Mr. Weir’s case is believed to be a legal first where a defendant has been convicted twice for the same offence after his original conviction was quashed by the Court of Appeal. It was also the first time a second murder charge had been added to a double jeopardy case following the change of law.

Marcus Rickard advocates and advises on a wide range of Serious Crime matters and also specialises in Appeal work. Read more: [Marcus Rickard Profile]

Joshua Ellis is developing a busy Crime practice and has particular experience in representing clients with complex mental health needs. Read more: [Joshua Ellis Profile]

Marcus and Joshua have been instructed by Georgiana McCarthy of Wells Burcombe Solicitors to consider the merits of an appeal of Mr Weir’s 2019 conviction.

News stories:
[The Guardian]
[BBC News]
[Sky News]
[ITV News]