Stephen Lawrence QC Michael Mansfield uses n-word live on Sky to highlight racism

The 18-year-old murder victim was fatally stabbed by a gang of racists in Eltham, south-east London, on April 22 1993.

Two of the group of up to six thugs who attacked the teenager and his friend Duwayne Brooks, simply because they were black, have been convicted of murder.

Michael Mansfield QC, who helped the family in their private prosecution of the police in the wake of the tragedy, appeared on Sky News this morning to discuss how institutional racism still exists.

However his language meant that the presenter had to cut him off to apologise.

He said: "[Racism] is not something that has gone away, but we are much more alert because of the Lawrence case to the risks and the prejudice and of course at the end of the day the violence that comes out of this kind of thinking.

"Sometimes it's not evident by someone calling somebody a c**n or a n****** or whatever phrase there is… it's not as obvious as that."

Mr Mansfield was then cut off, with the presenter saying: "We do have to apologise for that language because they are very offensive terms.

"I understand why you used them to illustrate your point but we do have to apologise."

He then continued: "Those are terms that were used and still are used.

"We hope… that institutions will recognise it isn't always phrased in that way.

"It's subversive, it's insidious and it's the kind of  prejudice that leads to a situation in which people are isolated and alienated – and the non-white population feel unwanted."

On social media he was criticised for his language.

David Norris and Gary Dobson are both serving life sentences, while three other men who have consistently been accused of the killing but never convicted are Jamie Acourt, 41, from Bexley, his brother Neil Acourt, 42, who uses his mother's maiden name Stuart, and Luke Knight, 41, both from Eltham.

Stephen's father Neville Lawrence, 76, announced last week he had made the humbling decision to forgive his son's killers.

He said: "The fact that I had to lose my first child has been devastating. I can't begin to explain the pain and the anguish me and my family have suffered over the past 25 years."

Scotland Yard has admitted it has no new lines of inquiry in the investigation into Stephen's murder.

The force has said that unless detectives receive new information the investigation is "unlikely to progress further".


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