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Lockerbie bomber's family to appeal conviction in UK's top court

Abdel Basset al-Megrahi's family was denied an appeal over his conviction at the Scottish Appeal Court in January
Police officers walk past the wreckage from Pan Am Flight 103 which killed at least 270 people (AFP)

The family of a Libyan man found guilty of the 1988 Lockerbie plane bombing will appeal his conviction in Britain's highest court after being refused permission by the Scottish Appeal Court.

Abdel Basset al-Megrahi, an intelligence officer who died in 2012, was jailed for life in 2001 for the attack which killed 259 people on board the Boeing 747, including 190 Americans and 11 people on the ground.

Megrahi, who denied blowing up Pan Am Flight 103, died in 2012, three years after being released on compassionate grounds because of prostate cancer. 

His family believed there was possible misconduct of justice, with their lawyer Aamer Anwar saying the same court had refused to appeal the judgment.

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"I have now instructed our legal team to seek leave to appeal directly to the UK Supreme Court, which is the final court of appeal for my father's case," Megrahi's son Ali said in a statement on Thursday.

"I regard my father, Abdel Basset al-Megrahi as the 271st victim of Lockerbie."

Muammar Gaddafi accepted Libya's responsibility for the bombing in 2003 and paid compensation to families but did not admit to personally ordering the attack.

However, Megrahi's family and some Scottish victims' relatives have always doubted his guilt and Libya's responsibility and say the truth has yet to come out.  

In December, the US unveiled charges against Abu Agila Mohammad Masud over his role in the attack.

Masud is currently serving a 10-year sentence in Tripoli for his role in building bombs under Gaddafi.

In January, the Scottish Appeal Court upheld the decision to convict Megrahi, the only person convicted for the bombing.