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Football | Barclays Premier League

Hillsborough inquests date set for December 19



An application to quash the original verdicts in the investigation into the deaths of 96 Liverpool supporters in the 1989 Hillsborough football stadium disaster will be heard next Wednesday.

The Judicial Office said the application was scheduled to be heard at the High Court in London after Attorney General Dominic Grieve requested to have the verdicts of the original inquests quashed so fresh ones can be held.

The original inquests returned verdicts of accidental death but Grieve wants to present new evidence after an independent inquiry published in September exposed a police cover-up following Britain's worst disaster at a sports event.

The crush was triggered by massive overcrowding in a terrace at one end of the Hillsborough stadium in the northern English city of Sheffield at the 1989 FA Cup semifinal between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest.

The damning inquiry found that 41 of the 96 who died had had the "potential to survive" if they had received medical treatment earlier.

It said 164 police statements had been altered, 116 of them to remove or change "unfavourable" accounts about the police's handling of the crisis.

Relatives of the dead have battled for years to have the verdicts of accidential death overturned.

In England, inquests are held to examine sudden or unexplained deaths. They set out to determine the place and time of death as well as how the deceased came by their death, but do not apportion blame.

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