Man convicted of acid murder lodges appeal against conviction with 'new evidence'

Lee Calvert (Photo: Nathan Hyde)
Lee Calvert (Photo: Nathan Hyde)

Lee Calvert was 23-years-old when he was convicted of murder and possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life, following a trial at Bradford Crown Court in 2014.

It came after father-of-three Barry Selby, 50, was shot in the knee and had acid thrown in his face when a group of masked men broke into his home in October 2013.

Calvert is one of four men who were jailed for the killing. He was sentenced to a minimum term of 36 years, but that was reduced to 32 years following an appeal.

His family insist he is innocent and have been fighting for his release, but previous appeals have been dismissed.

The Criminal Cases Review Commission – an independent body set up by the government to investigate alleged miscarriages of justice – announced this week it has referred his conviction case to the Court of Appeal “for a fresh appeal on the basis of new evidence”.

At the trial in 2014, Joseph Lowther, Robert Woodhead and Andrew Feather were also convicted of murder at Bradford Crown Court.

The court was told that Calvert, Lowther and Woodhead carried out the attack at Mr Selby’s home in Rayleigh Street, East Bowling, and Feather was their get-away driver.

Prosecutors said the men decided to “kneecap” Mr Selby after they had been involved in a number of violent clashes with his son on the Holme Wood Estate in Bradford.

The masked attackers smashed the door open at around 2am, shot Mr Selby in the knee with a handgun and doused in strong sulphuric acid.

His wife, who had crouched between a bed and the wall, claimed to have identified one of the intruders as Calvert because of his “distinctive eyes” and the visible part of his face.

Mr Selby was taken to the specialist burns unit at Pinderfields Hospital in Wakefield with 50 per cent burns to the back of his scalp, his neck, his upper and lower back, the back of his thighs and the back of his lower leg.

He suffered multiple organ failure as a result of the severe burns and died in hospital four days later.

The Criminal Cases Review Commission said that over the last three years, more than 100 miscarriages of justice have been overturned following its referrals.

It is asked to review around 1,400 cases each year, but only refers around 3 per cent of applications to the appeal courts.

Earlier this year, the commission referred the case of Andrew Malikson to the Court of Appeal and this led to his rape conviction being overturned 17 years after he was jailed.

Judges found there was no forensic evidence linking him to the crime, but there was DNA which implicated another man.