Harry Dunn parents thank outgoing foreign secretary Dominic Raab for his 'commitment, determination and support'

Northamptonshire campaigners hope to meet replacement Liz Truss 'as soon as possible'

Wednesday, 15th September 2021, 5:29 pm
Updated Wednesday, 15th September 2021, 5:30 pm

Harry Dunn's parents have thanked outgoing Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab for supporting their campaign for justice for their Northamptonshire son.

Charlotte Charles and Tim Dunn also hope to meet his replacement, Liz Truss, 'to ensure their campaign remains at the top of the UK-United States relations agenda'.

Mr Raab has been demoted to justice secretary and Ms Truss has been promoted from international development secretary in a cabinet reshuffle today (Wednesday, September 15).

(L-R) Dominic Raab, Harry Dunn and Liz Truss. Photos: family handout and Getty Images

Harry's parents' spokesperson, Radd Seiger, said: "I would like to thank Dominic Raab for his commitment, determination and support to date in ensuring that Justice4Harry is delivered for Charlotte and Tim in his time as foreign secretary and wish him well in his new job as justice secretary.

"It is fair to say that our relationship with Mr Raab did not get off to the best of starts where we did not always see eye to eye on the way forward. This led to understandable frustration and anger on the parents' part.

"But to his credit, Mr Raab graciously acknowledged that he could have handled things better and then went on to make it clear to the US government consistently that nothing short of justice would do.

"He also went on to close to the diplomatic immunity loophole at RAF Croughton that the US government unforgivably took advantage of in recalling the Sacoolases to the USA.

"What happened to Harry's family will never happen again and that was always a key part of our campaign."

Harry, 19, from Charlton, was killed after his motorcycle was involved in a crash with a car being driven on the wrong side of the road on the B4031 outside Croughton on August 27, 2019.

The American driver, Anne Sacoolas, controversially claimed diplomatic immunity as her husband, Jonathan, was working for the US government at RAF Croughton and returned to her homeland.

She has been charged with causing death by dangerous driving but the US State Department has repeatedly refused to extradite her.

Harry's parents were furious with Mr Raab after their first meeting as he did not seem to be on their side, with Mr Dunn confronting the minister and urging people to vote against him after a hustings in November 2019.

But the relationship improved with the Esher and Walton MP taking up their case with then-Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and publicly backing their campaign.

The former foreign secretary also agreed with the US to change the wording of a secret diplomatic immunity waiver for American government staff at RAF Croughton.

The waiver previously did not explicitly include spouses, which Anne Sacoolas was able to use to avoid prosecution over Harry's death, but this has been amended to close the loophole.

Mr Seiger added: "There is much work left to be done in the campaign and Harry parents and I look forward to meeting the new foreign secretary, Liz Truss, as soon as possible in order to ensure that Harry remains right at the top of the agenda in US-USA relations."