Date: 17 Oct 1999
Gerald Rae was found dead in the front seat of his car on 17 October 1999.
The police later said that there were no suspicious circumstances surrounding his death although his cause of death could not be determined. They also said that there was no evidence that he had died in suspicious circumstances.
He had been a key witness in a perjury trial and had given evidence the week before at the High Court in Edinburgh against seven Strathclyde police officers who were charged with having told lies about a raid that had taken place at Gerald Rae's flat in Glasgow during which he said that he had been handcuffed by them and beaten whilst he was lying down with pick shafts and baseball bats. He had also said that he had been gagged and carried from his home.
However, the police officers told a different story.
It was heard that although Gerald Rae had died before the trial had ended, the evidence that he had given would not be invalidated.
The seven police officers, six men and one woman were accused of telling lies about the raid at a trial in December 1997 and having covered up an attack on Gerald Rae during the raid at his in Cartside Street, Glasgow, in December 1990.
When the perjury trial concluded on 11 November 1999, five police officers were cleared whilst the other two had walked free earlier after the judge heard legal arguments from their defence lawyers. The case had lasted five weeks. At the perjury trial the judge summed up and instructed the jury that in order to convict the police officers they had to be certain that they had assaulted Gerald Rae and that they had also had been deliberately, clearly and unambiguously lying at the Court of Session hearing where it was claimed they had been lying.
It was heard that Gerald Rae had been a drug dealer but it was not said that he had been a recent user. His death came at about the same time, 17 October 1999, as a number of other deaths, including those of drug dealers, in the area. The other deaths included John Nisbet and William Lindsay who were found shot and burnt on 13 October 1999. It also coincided with the discovery of David Ferguson who was found hacked to death on a footpath near the railway line off Calder Road in Mossend, Lanarkshire on 15 October 1999.