Ministry of Defence pays £200,000 compensation to Red Cap widows

Ministry of Defence compensation


The widows of two Red Caps killed by an Iraqi mob have secretly been paid £200,000 compensation each by the Ministry of Defence.

Corporals Russell Aston, 30, and Paul Long, 24, were among six British military policemen who were clubbed, kicked and repeatedly shot in the flashpoint town of Mujer al-Kabir.

Anna Aston, 34, and Gemma Long, 25, got the money in the wake of claims the six were sent in with faulty radios and only a few rounds of ammunition. The families of the four other Red Caps have not had a penny - and were furious yesterday when they learned of the secret deal.

The Ministry of Defence insists the out of court compensation settlement is based on the two soldiers' loss of earnings. And it continues to deny responsibility for the deaths of Russell and Paul or their comrades - Sergeant Simon Hamilton- Jewell, 41, Corporal Simon Miller, 21, and Lance Corporals Benjamin Hyde, 23, and Tom Keys, 20.

In March an inquest said the soldiers were unlawfully killed.

Coroner Nicholas Gardiner said they should not have had antiquated radios and inadequate ammunition. Last month it was revealed Scotland Yard may investigate aspects of the killings - including what orders were given to the Red Caps and the claims of neglect against the Ministry of Defence.

Ministry of Defence compensation for other widows

The widows' deal could lead to huge compensation claims from the dependants of other British soldiers killed in action. Although the Government does not admit liability over the deaths, the payments could be interpreted as an admission that the Ministry of Defence has "an obligation" towards their families.

If you have been effected by a similar situation, our specialist Ministry of Defence solicitors may be able to help. Fill in our online claims form for free advice.