UK

Post Office scandal victim calls for compensation at Brit Awards

Jo Hamilton was joined on stage by actress Monica Dolan, who portrayed her in ITV’s hit series Mr Bates vs The Post Office.

Raye on stage after winning the award for Song of the Year with a victim of the Post Office scandal
The Brit Awards 2024 – Show – London Raye on stage after winning the award for Song of the Year with a victim of the Post Office scandal (James Manning/PA)

A former subpostmistress who was a victim of the Horizon IT scandal has called for compensation to be sped up for those wrongfully prosecuted at the Brit Awards.

Jo Hamilton was joined on stage by actress Monica Dolan, who portrayed her in ITV’s hit series Mr Bates vs The Post Office, to present the first category of the evening.

Mrs Hamilton, 66, was falsely accused of stealing £36,000 from the Post Office branch she ran in South Warnborough, Hampshire. She pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of false accounting to avoid going to jail and was prosecuted in 2006.

Raye on stage after winning the award for Song of the Year
The Brit Awards 2024 – Show – London Raye on stage after winning the award for Song of the Year (James Manning/PA)

The mother-of-two told the crowd at the O2 Arena: “I want to thank everyone in the country for the love and the support they have given the postmasters. Please can you keep on supporting us because, despite what the Government says, they’re not paying the postmasters.”

Mrs Hamilton took up a cleaning job, was forced to mortgage her house twice, borrow money from friends and source donations from the local community to pay back the funds.

Her conviction was overturned in 2021 when it was discovered she had been a victim of the Post Office Horizon Scandal, which saw more than 700 subpostmasters prosecuted because of a faulty accounting system.

Mrs Hamilton presented the Song of the Year award to Raye for Escapism, a track which also featured the artist 070 Shake.