Hawick soldier Barry Singleton has been cleared of murder following a second investigation into the shooting of an Iraqi civilian more than a decade ago.
In 2005, the army cleared Singleton, 34, following a two-year investigation into the incident, but last December news broke that he was facing a further murder probe into the shooting which took place in Basra in 2003.
Singleton, who, at the time, was a lance corporal with the King’s Own Scottish Borderers, fired 12 shots into the vehicle at a roadside checkpoint after the driver sped off when challenged. He then administered first aid to the dying Iraqi.
The KOSB 12-week tour of Iraq ended 12 weeks after the incident and it was then that the army arrested Singleton and investigated the incident as part of a number of inquiries into claims of misconduct in Iraq.
The Iraqi Historic Allegations team had until 2016 to complete its investigation and, in December, the Service Prosecuting Authority said a probe was under way but Singleton had not yet been charged.
The Hawick News contacted Sergeant Singleton, who is now with the Royal Regiment Of Scotland, and asked him to confirm that the investigation was at an end but he said: I am sorry but I am unable to comment.”
Asked if the investigation was over he added: “I can’t comment on anything to do with this case.”
But this week, his close friend and former boxing coach John Sharkey, told us: “I have spoken to Barry’s mum and she informed me that the investigation is over.
“His mum is delighted and it is a real weight off her shoulders. It’s been hard on her as well as Barry and the rest of the family.
“It’s great news. Barry has faced two investigations now and we are hoping that this is now at an end and that he’ll now be able to get on with doing a job he loves.
“He’s a great lad and I’m sure he can move on from this.”