Nicky Jacobs trial: ‘It was a matter of any black man will do’ says Winston Silcott

It took just four hours last week for a jury to find Nicky Jacobs not guilty of the murder of PC Keith Blakelock.

Blakelock was killed during the riot in Broadwater Farm, Tottenham in 1985 which was sparked by the death of Cynthia Jarrett after police searched her home (see bottom right).

It is a scandal that the case against Nicky got as far as it did.

Evidence was presented by witnesses who lied throughout, and who had received payments from police.

Winston Silcott was one of the Tottenham Three who were wrongly jailed in 1987 for the murder of Blakelock.

Their convictions were quashed in 1991 after forensics revealed evidence had been fabricated.

Winston told Socialist Worker, “There was no evidence against Nicky, it was just a matter of any black man will do.

“It is a matter of targeting people from Tottenham, especially Broadwater Farm, to make an example out of them.”

Winston Silcott

Winston Silcott (Pic: Guy Smallman)


“It’s a sorry state of affairs in the criminal justice system.”

The prosecution case against Nicky relied on the testimony of three witnesses known by the pseudonyms of Rhodes Levin, John Brown and Q.

Levin and Brown had been paid £2,500 and £5,000 respectively for providing evidence against Nicky and others during a reinvestigation into Blakelock’s murder in the 1990s.

On top of the payments, police paid for Levin to catch a flight back from holiday. The MOT on Brown’s car had been paid by cops, as had his rent arrears and phone bills.

And Brown told police in 1993, “It’s very hard for me because…I can’t tell the difference between them. To me a black man is a black man.”

Brown and Levin admitted to “punching and kicking” Blakelock but were given immunity from prosecution.

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