Christine Keeler’s perjury conviction is a national scandal and she should receive a posthumous pardon, a top human rights lawyer has said.
Keeler became an outcast after her affairs with both the then War Minister John Profumo and a Russian spy emerged in 1963.
She was then jailed for perjury in December 1963, several months after Profumo had resigned over the scandal.
Keeler had given evidence during the trial of her former partner Lucky Gordon, who she claimed had attacked her. He was convicted and jailed for three years.
However, it later turned out she had lied to the court and so was sentenced to nine months in prison.
Human rights KC Dr Felicity Gerry said last night that Keeler’s prosecution was ‘dreadful’ and should be overturned.
She has joined forces with Keeler’s son to make an application to the Criminal Cases Review Commission.
Christine Keeler’s perjury conviction is a national scandal and she should receive a posthumous pardon, a top human rights lawyer has said. Above: Keeler posing for a photoshoot she did after her conviction
Model Christine Keeler pictured in 1964 in a bathing suit, after she served a stint in prison
Speaking to the Mirror, Dr Gerry said: ‘It is a national scandal that she was ever prosecuted at all and that she died without having her case being understood and her convictions overturned.
‘Sending her to prison was dreadful and she rightly deserves a posthumous exoneration.’
She branded the original case the ‘epitome of slut-shaming’ that has had ‘lasting implications’ for all women who have been ‘framed as liars’.
Dr Gerry believes Keeler, who died aged 75 in 2017, was wrongly convicted, because the fact she lied was ‘legally irrelevant’.
Gordon won an appeal after it emerged that Keeler had told the court two witnesses were not there.
But Dr Gerry and Keeler’s son insist there was no doubt that Gordon had assaulted her.
It was also alleged that Ms Keeler was pressured by the two witnesses who went on to admit they had seen Gordon attack her.
Human rights KC Dr Felicity Gerry said last night that Keeler’s prosecution was ‘dreadful’ and should be overturned
The model was at the heart of Britain’s most infamous sex scandal after she and war minister John Profumo (pictured in 1962) had an extra-marital affair when she was 19-years-old
Keeler’s son, Seymour Platt, 51, told the Mirror last week that it was ‘wrong that she went to prison’ and that she was ‘exploited and abused by powerful men’.
Mr Platt vowed to ‘fulfil a promise to tell the truth about her life’ and to clear his late mother’s name.
He added: ‘She shouldn’t have gone to prison and if she shouldn’t have gone to prison, she wasn’t a liar.’
Ms Keeler was branded a ‘prostitute’ in the press and as a ‘harlot’ by then-Prime Minister Harold Wilson after her affair with Profumo and Soviet attache Yevgeny Ivanov in the midst of the Cold War.
Staff at the CCRC have been trawling through archived notes from her barrister Lord Jeremy Hutchinson, who begged the judge not the jail her. They are also questioning top KCs who are connected to the case.
He said the men she was with in 1963 all saw her as ‘their property’ and exploited her.
Mr Platt said the documents submitted to the CCRC prove that his mother was ‘beaten up in the street and she went to prison’.
Christine Keeler pictured in 2006 carrying a newspaper under her arm
Cliveden House,in Buckinghamshire (pictured in 1963) where Ms Keeler caught Profumo’s eye when she swam naked
Christine Keeler on her way to the Old Bailey on June 7, 1963
Crowds outside the Old Bailey surge forward as Christine Keeler leaves court on July 23, 1963
Christine Keeler poses in a swimsuit on a sun lounger on a beach in Cannes in May 1963
He also slammed the accusations of her being a prostitute as ‘ridiculous’ as she was ‘broke’ and he went into poverty as she found it impossible to earn money.
He revealed that his mother wrote in her will that she wanted him to share the truth about her life.
She was a dancer based in Soho, London when she met osteopath Stephen Ward, who introduced her into high society.
He took her to a gathering at Cliveden House in Buckinghamshire in July 1961 where she caught Profumo’s eye when she swam naked.
The pair engaged in an affair at the same time that Keeler was sleeping with handsome Russian spy Evgeny Ivanov.
Profumo lied to the House of Commons about his affair but was soon found out and Keeler sold her story to the News of The World for £23,000.
In June 1963, Profumo quit in disgrace, amid allegations Keeler had been asked by Ivanov to discover from the War Minister when the West Germans might receive U.S. nuclear missiles to be stationed on their soil.
War hero Profumo had been a rising star of the Tory Party and was married to actress Valerie Hobson, one of the great beauties of her day.
Keeler ended up serving half her term.