A FORMER Huddersfield man who claimed he was wrongly jailed for murdering a father-of-two after going to his sister's aid in a street brawl suffered defeat in his Appeal Court bid to clear his name.
Karl Stanley-Gonzalves, formerly of Sheepridge but now of Leo Terrace, Withernsea, near Hull, was jailed for life in May, 2002, after a jury convicted him of murdering Malcolm Whittle, a 32-year-old former club rugby player who died from a stab wound to the back.
Stanley-Gonzalves, now 29, claimed he intervened in a street fracas in Queen Street, Withernsea, when he saw Mr Whittle with his hand around the throat of his sister, Maria Holmes.
He claimed to have been acting in her defence but was convicted of murder after three hours' deliberation by the jury.
The killer, who moved to Withernsea from Sheepridge, appealed against conviction citing fresh expert evidence which he claimed cast doubt on CCTV footage of the killing.
But after a two-hour hearing yesterday, Lord Justice Scott Baker dismissed his appeal, saying the court would give reasons for its decision later.
Ben Nolan QC, for Stanley-Gonzalves, introduced new evidence from an expert on video film analysis, David Oxley OBE, who testified that the original CCTV footage presented a radically different story to the prosecution version of events when comprehensively analysed.
Mr Nolan said that if the jury had had the benefit of Mr Oxley's in-depth analysis there was a good chance they might have concluded that it was reasonable self-defence.
He said: "Had the jury had the benefit of hearing his expert interpretation of what is shown in these stills and CCTV footage they would have had the picture that at the critical moment this victim had his hand at the throat of his sister."
Stanley-Gonzalves had become involved in the brawl in order to fend off "a potentially life-threatening attack on his sister", said the barrister.
But Crown counsel, Tony Stevenson, said it was for the jury to make up their own minds about the episode depicted in the footage.
Stanley-Gonzalves first hit the headlines in his home town of Huddersfield in 1993 when he escaped from a young offenders' institute in Doncaster.
He was recaptured in June, 1994, after a rooftop siege in Dalton in which he held police at bay by threatening to hurl down slates from the roof of a house in Wakefield Road.
He was finally talked down by police after a two-hour vigil.