The report into the Hillsborough disaster published this week exposed the extent of the attempted cover-up of policing and emergency service failures that day for the first time.
Ninety-six fans died during a crush at the Hillsborough Stadium on April 15 1989 at the start of an FA Cup semi-final match between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest.
The families of those who died have fought a 23-year campaign to obtain justice for their loved ones, who were smeared by members of South Yorkshire Police with the connivance of elements of the media.
The damning report by the Hillsborough Independent Panel revealed a litany of lies, deception and deceit confirming many of the family's suspicions but also containing a number of shocking revelations.
From the outset South Yorkshire Police sought to deflect responsibility for the disaster onto Liverpool fans, accusing them of drunkenness and claiming that fans without tickets had rushed the gates.
A major incident plan was not implemented by the emergency services and there were clear operational failures in response to the disaster.
The then chief constable of South Yorkshire Peter Wright and his officers, along with the Tory MP for Sheffield Hallam Irvine Patnick, attempted to cover up the force's failings, briefing media that drunken, ticketless fans and violence were to blame.
The panel said there was no evidence to support the proposition that alcohol played any part in events.
The report also found that 164 police statements were altered, 116 of them to remove or alter "unfavourable" comments about the policing on the day.
South Yorkshire Ambulance Service documents were also doctored.
An attempt was made to impugn the reputations of those who died by officers who carried out Police National Computer checks on victims.
Blood alcohol levels were tested in some survivors as well as in all those who died - including children. The panel said that in some there was "no apparent medical reason for the test" and no record was kept of the tests or their results in the medical notes of the survivors.
Documents also showed that there was a delayed response from emergency services when people were being crushed and killed and that up to 41 of the fans who died "had potential to survive" had the response been quicker.
The panel said a total of 41 victims were either alive after 3.15pm - the coroner's cut-off time - or had suffered injuries which were inconsistent with the findings of the pathologists.
The coroner ruled that by 3.15pm all the victims had received fatal injuries, which meant that the inquests did not examine the response after that time.
The original pathologists' evidence of a single, unvarying pattern of death was "unsustainable," the panel said.
Access to Cabinet documents revealed that in discussion over the findings of Lord Taylor's inquiry into the disaster, Margaret Thatcher expressed concern that the "broad thrust" of the report constituted a "devastating criticism of the police."
So now we have access to the truth. But the campaign for justice for the victims of Hillsborough is far from over.
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