LOCAL MP Rebecca Pow MP has been promised a Government review of a second potential Post Office IT system scandal pre-dating the Horizon debacle.

Ms Pow took former sub-postmaster Steve Marston, who now lives in Bishops Lydeard, to meet Post Office Minister Kevin Hollinrake in Westminster.

Mr Marston, 68, believes he was wrongly convicted of theft and false accounting because of errors in ‘Capture’ accounting software used in the 1990s before Fujitsu’s Horizon was introduced.

He was bankrupted and forced to leave his home after the Post Office prosecuted him in 1998 over an alleged £79,000 shortfall in his sub-Post Office in Heap Bridge, Greater Manchester.

Mr Marston said he was placed in a position where he had to plead guilty to try to avoid jail, which he did.

Mr Hollingrake agreed an independent IT expert would be commissioned to assess evidence alleging glitches in Capture.

Ms Pow said: “The distress and impact the Post Office Capture system has had on Mr Marston and his family is unimaginable.

“I was pleased to receive prompt assurances from the Minister that his Department was in active discussions about Capture.

“I was especially keen for the Minister to hear from Mr Marston first-hand and I pay tribute to both Steve and his wife for their bravery in outlining their experiences and the subsequent impact on their lives.

“After an open and frank discussion, I welcome the commitment from the Minister to appoint an independent expert to assess the evidence from Mr Marston and a number of other ex-sub-postmasters to determine whether the Capture system was indeed faulty.

“I want to pay tribute to the Minister himself, for his dogged work in searching out the truth and also to MP Kevan Jones for all his work on this issue, making this investigation cross-party and independent.

“I look forward to continuing to work with both individuals on behalf of Mr Marston.

“If there is clear evidence of a miscarriage of justice it must be properly handled through the appropriate channels.”

Mr Hollinrake said: “We want to get to the truth. We are interested in justice and I give my assurances we will get the right person to test the evidence.

“I want to thank Rebecca Pow for acting swiftly on behalf of her constituent Steve Marston and for bringing this to my attention.”

Mr Marston said: “Both my wife and myself would sincerely like to thank Rebecca for her fantastic help in bringing my case to the Minister’s attention.

“We feel that we had a very productive meeting and would like to thank everybody in attendance for their support and kind words.

“It is my hope that not just my case but everybody else who have had their lives destroyed by faulty software called Capture can look forward to a speedy and just resolution to this miscarriage of justice and give us the opportunity to draw a line beneath it and carry on with our heads held high for the rest of our lives.”