He was found guilty of rape in 2003 and jailed for life with a minimum term of seven years. He served 10 more because he maintained his innocence.
Andrew Malkinson, who spent 17 years in prison for a rape he did not commit, has won further grounds in his successful Court of Appeal bid to clear his name.
He was found guilty of raping a woman in Greater Manchester in 2003 and the next year was jailed for life with a minimum term of seven years.
He served 10 more because he maintained his innocence.
But his conviction was quashed by senior judges at the Court of Appeal in July after DNA evidence linking another man to the crime came to light.
Overturning Mr Malkinson’s convictions, for two counts of rape and one of choking or strangling with intent to commit rape, Lord Justice Holroyde said he could “leave the court free and no longer be subject to the conditions of licence”.
At the time of Mr Malkinson’s trial, there was no DNA evidence linking him to the crime and the prosecution case against him was based only on identification evidence.
The judge, sitting with Mr Justice Goose and Sir Robin Spencer, said last month that Mr Malkinson’s legal team “raised a number of substantial and important points” in other parts of his appeal that would be decided in writing.
In a ruling on Monday, the three judges said Mr Malkinson’s conviction was also unsafe because of failures to disclose evidence.
Edward Henry KC, for Mr Malkinson, previously described these as “deplorable disclosure failures, which mostly lay at the door of the Greater Manchester Police”.
They include police photographs of the victim’s left hand, which supported her evidence that she broke a nail scratching the face of her attacker, and the fact the two eyewitnesses who identified Mr Malkinson had convictions for dishonesty offences.
None of this was available to Mr Malkinson’s defence team at his trial and Mr Henry said the failure to disclose the photographs “deprived” Mr Malkinson of his “strongest defence point – his lack of any facial injury”.
In Monday’s ruling, Lord Justice Holroyde ruled in Mr Malkinson’s favour on a further two grounds.
He said: “In the very particular circumstances of this case, the non-disclosure of the two relevant photographs prevented the appellant from putting his case forward in its best light, and strengthened the prosecution case against him in a manner which the photographs show to have been mistaken.”
The judge added: “Cross-examination about the witnesses’ previous convictions would have been capable of casting doubt on their general honesty and capable of affecting the jury’s view as to whether they were civic-minded persons doing their best to assist.”
However, the three judges at the Court of Appeal denied Mr Malkinson’s bid on two other arguments over one of the witnesses’ drug use and sentencing for a motoring offence.
Lord Justice Holroyde also said: “The stark reality is that the appellant has spent very many years in prison, having been convicted on identification evidence which he always disputed and which cannot now be regarded as providing a safe basis for the jury’s verdicts.
“We regret that this court cannot alter that fact.”