The US woman being treated as a suspect following the death of Harry Dunn does not have diplomatic immunity, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO has reportedly stated.
Nineteen-year-old Harry died when his motorbike crashed into a car outside RAF Croughton in Northamptonshire on August 27.
The suspect, 42-year-old Anne Sacoolas – who is reportedly married to a US intelligence official – was granted diplomatic immunity following the crash.
However UK foreign secretary Dominic Raab has now written to Harry’s family to tell them: “The US have not informed us that they too consider that immunity is no longer pertinent,” the BBC and Sky News reported.
In a letter, he added: “We have pressed strongly for a waiver of immunity, so that justice can be done … Whilst the US government has steadfastly declined to give that waiver, that is not the end of the matter.
“We have looked at this very carefully … the UK government’s position is that immunity, and therefore any question of waiver, is no longer relevant in Mrs Sacoolas’ case, because she has returned home.”
An FCO spokesman told the PA that the office “would not be commenting further on the content of the letter”.
Meanwhile, Sacoolas’s legal representative Amy Jeffress, from the law firm Arnold and Porter, said: “Anne is devastated by this tragic accident.
“No loss compares to the death of a child and Anne extends her deepest sympathy to Harry Dunn’s family.”
Sacoolas is believed to have been driving on the wrong side of the road when she was involved in the crash, an error that US President Donald Trump appeared to defend during a press briefing.
Northamptonshire Police said Sacoolas had told officers she had no intention of leaving the UK after becoming involved in the investigation, however she has since returned to the US with her family.
Radd Seiger, spokesperson for Harry’s family, said in a statement that he had spoken with Jeffress and the pair had agreed “to get together ASAP… to discuss how we are going to achieve a solution”.
Seiger added he was studying the FCO letter “with legal and political experts” to “fully understand where that leaves us”.
He said: “That all said, clearly a positive step forward but we won’t rest until we get #Justice4Harry.”
It comes as Harry’s parents Charlotte Charles and Tim Dunn said they would be flying to the US to “put pressure on the US administration to do the right thing”.
Earlier, Sacoolas’s lawyer said: “Anne would like to meet with Mr Dunn’s parents so that she can express her deepest sympathies and apologies for this tragic accident.
“We have been in contact with the family’s attorneys and look forward to hearing from them.”
The lawyer claimed Sacoolas spoke with “authorities” at the scene of the crash and met Northampton police at her home the following day.
“She will continue to cooperate with the investigation,” the lawyer said.
On Friday, the Boris Johnson said America was “absolutely ruthless” in its safeguarding of Sacoolas following the decision to grant her diplomatic immunity.
The prime minister said although Trump was sympathetic towards Harry’s family’s views on the use of diplomatic immunity, the US is “very reluctant” to allow citizens to be tried abroad.
Speaking of taking their campaign to the US, Harry’s family said in a statement that they “continue to live in a nightmare” and have so far been unable to grieve after his death.
His parents are due to fly to the US on Sunday, ITV News reported.
A statement released on behalf of the family said: “As if losing Harry was not enough, they now find themselves having to expend enormous time and energy, which they can ill afford, generating sufficient publicity to garner public support to persuade the US government to help achieve closure and return the driver Mrs Sacoolas to England to face the consequences of her actions.”