Ex-Scottish leader acquitted on all sex crimes charges

Clay Curtis
March 24, 2020

Mr Salmond served as First Minister from 2007 to 2014, when he stepped down and was replaced by Nicola Sturgeon.

Alex Salmond has vowed evidence of a plot to discredit him will "see the light of day" after he was acquitted of a string of sexual offences, including attempted rape. Several of the alleged assaults were said to have taken place at the first minister's official residence.

What can now be laid bare is that the incredible aspect of what has been arguably the most sensational trial in Scotland's legal history is that he wasn't accusing Labour or the Tories of "deliberate fabrications for a political purpose".

After walking free, Salmond spoke to reporters and, referring to the coronavirus crisis, said: "Whatever nightmare I've been in over these last two years, it is nothing compared to the nightmare every single one of us is living through".

During a procedural hearing of the case, reporting of which was banned until the end of the trial, Mr Salmond's defence team claimed the Scottish Government and those working there turned to the criminal process to try to "discredit" him after he won a civil case into how the administration handled sexual harassment complaints against him. "People are dying and many more are going to die".

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The judge asked the jury to begin considering their verdicts shortly before 2pm on Friday, but were sent home for the weekend and will resume deliberations on Monday morning.

He was SNP leader on two separate occasions, from 1990 to 2000, and again from 2004 to 2014.

Scottish political commentator Gerry Hassan told Al Jazeera: "Apart from the sensational first and second day of the Salmond trial, it was relegated to also-ran comments in the mainstream media".

Alex Salmond, who took Scotland to the brink of independence in 2014, has been cleared of all charges following attempted rape and sexual assault allegations.

Salmond was found not guilty of 12 charges and the remaining charge was found not proven.

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