Judge rejects Sheridan bid for an appeal

Tommy Sheridan has suffered a setback in his bid to overturn his perjury conviction.

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A judge has refused the jailed socialist politician leave to appeal his conviction and three-year sentence.

Lawyers for Sheridan now have a matter of days to ask two judges to review their colleague's decision.

Sheridan was jailed in January for telling lies during an earlier defamation case against the News of the World newspaper.

Sentencing the former Scottish Socialist Party leader to three years, trial judge Lord Bracadale said: "You brought the walls of the temple crashing down not only on your own head but also on the heads of your family and your political friends and foes alike.

"You embarked on an action in the Court of Session knowing that for it to be successful you would require to tell lies under affirmation."

Sheridan's solicitor Aamer Anwar then lodged an appeal on the grounds that pre-trial publicity had denied the left-winger a fair trial.

However, Sheridan's attempt to appeal has stumbled at the first hurdle after Lord Wheatley refused his application.

For Sheridan to have passed the first "sift", the judge would have had to agree that the papers produced contained arguable grounds of appeal.

Now that leave to appeal has been dismissed, Sheridan's next option is for his legal team to make his case to two High Court judges.

His lawyers had 14 days from the initial refusal on June 10 to appeal to the so-called second sift.

Mr Anwar said: "Clearly Mr Sheridan is disappointed."

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