27 years later, prosecutors identify two new Lockerbie bombing suspects

The wreckage of Pan Am Flight 103 in Lockerbie, Scotland, Dec. 22, 2988.

Scottish prosecutors report that they've identified two Libyans as suspects in the 1988 Lockerbie bombing of Pan Am Flight 103.

Officials say they plan on interviewing the unnamed pair in Tripoli about the bombing of a passenger jet over the town of Lockerbie in Scotland, which happened nearly 30 years ago. They believe the suspects were involved along with Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, the only person ever convicted of the bombing.

A Crown Office spokesman said in a statement released Thursday that they have sent a letter to the Libyan attorney general in Tripoli identifying the two suspects.

"The Lord Advocate and the US Attorney General are seeking the assistance of the Libyan judicial authorities for Scottish police officers and the FBI to interview the two named suspects in Tripoli," the statement read.

The attack killed 270 people.

In 2009, Megrahi was released from jail by the Scottish Government on compassionate grounds after he was diagnosed with prostate cancer. He died in 2012, and maintained his innocence his entire life. In 2013, Libya formally admitted responsibility for the attack.

The reopening of the case comes shortly after an in-depth investigation by the Frontline news unit into the bombing, entitled "My Brother's Bomber," that uncovered new evidence. The three-part series was by filmmaker and author Ken Dornstein, whose elder brother was among those killed. 

Brian Murtagh, the lead US prosecutor in the Lockerbie, told The New Yorker that Dornstein, as a journalist, had certain advantages over government investigators: “For an FBI agent to go to the places where Ken has gone, he would have to have permission from the Libyan government and the authorization of the State Department. Journalists don’t have to play by the same rules.” He continued, “We have jurisdiction to prosecute out the yin-yang, but if you can’t find the person your jurisdiction doesn’t amount to a whole lot.”

This story is by PRI's The World.