With His Reputation in Shreds Gilligan Faces Career Change; Justice for Kelly? with Labour Cock a Hoop, the Future Looks Bleak for the Man Who Made an Enemy of Campbell
Byline: MATTHEW BAYLEY
THE reputation of Andrew Gilligan was in tatters last night after devastating criticism from Lord Hutton. The Law Lord attacked virtually every aspect of his reporting, dismissing the central allegations of his explosive broadcast as 'unfounded'.
He also cast doubt on Gilligan's account of his meeting with Dr Kelly, criticising his inadequate notes which did not support the 'extremely grave' claims.
In his report on May 29 last year, Gilligan had alleged that the Government had 'sexed up' the September 2002 dossier on Iraq. He said they 'probably knew' the claim that Saddam could launch WMD in 45 minutes was false before it was published.
He also alleged that the claim had been omitted from the original draft of the dossier because intelligence services did not believe it.
But Lord Hutton said Gilligan's allegations - which he said constituted an attack on the integrity of the Government - were untrue.
'I consider that the (sexing up) allegation was unfounded as it would have been understood by those who heard the broadcasts to mean that the dossier had been embellished with intelligence known or believed to be false or unreliable, which was not the case,' he said in his report.
Lord Hutton added that the 45 minute claim had come from a source whom the intelligence services regarded as reliable and that it had not been included in the original draft because it was not received until later.
'Whatever doubts there may now be about the reliability of the intelligence in relation to the 45 minutes claim . . . the claim in the dossier was sanctioned at the time of publication by the JIC (Joint Intelligence Committee),' he said.
'A report by Mr Gilligan that the 45 minutes claim in the dossier was sanctioned by the JIC but that a source had told him that one section in the Defence Intelligence Service had expressed concern about the wording of the claim would have been an accurate report.
'But Mr Gilligan broadcast a very different and much graver allegation, which was unfounded.' Gilligan met Dr Kelly on May 22, taking abbreviated notes on his electronic personal organiser.
Computer experts found two versions of the notes which Lord Hutton said contained a 'significant' difference because the first version did not contain the word 'Campbell'. …