Shoreham Airshow pilot acquitted over crash deaths

Pilot Andrew Hill has been found not guilty of manslaughter over the Shoreham Airshow crash, in which 11 men died.

Mr Hill’s ex-military Hawker Hunter jet crashed on to the A27 in Sussex on 22 August 2015.

The ex-RAF pilot denied deliberately committing to a loop manoeuvre despite flying too low and too slow.

Karim Khalil QC, defending, argued Mr Hill had been suffering from “cognitive impairment” when the jet crashed.

Mr Hill was also formally found not guilty of a count that was not put in front of the jury of negligently or recklessly endangering the safety of an aircraft.

There were gasps from the families in the courtroom with many in tears as the verdicts were read out.

Mr Justice Edis told the relatives: “I am enormously impressed and grateful for the dignified way you have all behaved.

“I can see that you are upset and you are absolutely entitled to be but despite being upset you have behaved in a way which does you great credit.”

Speaking outside the Old Bailey, Leslye Polito, the mother of the youngest crash victim, Daniele Polito, 23, said she felt “disappointed, very upset and primarily let down by the justice system”.

She said: “The whole fact that it was avoidable, that was the hardest bit to consider and process. It’s still the hardest bit.”