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Barrister calls for retrial in Lynette corruption case.

A WELSH barrister has called for a new trial to be ordered in the case of eight former police officers accused of fabricating evidence against three men wrongly convicted of murder.

Last year the trial of eight ex-officers and two civilians collapsed at Swansea Crown Court Swansea Crown Court is a Crown Court in Swansea, Wales. It is located at the Law Courts on St. Helens Road.

This court deals with first tier criminals. External links
  • Court information
 after the Crown Prosecution Service
The Crown Prosecution Service, or CPS, is a non-ministerial department of the Government of the United Kingdom responsible for public prosecutions of people charged with criminal offences in England and Wales.
 said crucial evidence had been destroyed by the senior police officer investigating the case.

Last week, however, it emerged that the material had not been destroyed.

The 10 on trial had been accused of conspiring to pervert the course of justice to secure the conviction of three innocent men known as the Cardiff Three for the murder of Lynette White, a 20-year-old prostitute, in 1988.

Two parallel inquiries by Her Majesty's Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate and the Independent Police Complaints Commission are under way to establish what went wrong.

Most observers argue it would be very difficult or impossible to hold a new trial. But barrister Roger Everest, who lives near Cardiff, said a new trial should be ordered because the one that collapsed should be considered a "mistrial".

He said: "This was a mistrial because prosecuting counsel misled the judge by falsely claiming that evidence possibly helpful to the defence had been destroyed. It had not been destroyed and was actually in the possession of the South Wales police. This does not, therefore, give rise to a test for double jeopardy.

"In these circumstances, I believe the Court of Appeal can order a retrial on a proper application by the director of public prosecutions Director of Public Prosecutions nfiscal m/f general del Estado

Director of Public Prosecutions direct (Brit) nGeneralstaatsanwalt m 
 that the first proceedings were a mistrial and it is in the public interest to have the verdict by a jury in a case involving the credibility of South Wales police officers who are accused of perverting the course of justice In English or Irish law, perversion of the course of justice is a criminal offence in which someone acts in a manner that in some way prevents justice being served on either themselves or on a third party. Perverting the course of justice is an offence in common law.  in a murder trial."

A spokeswoman for the Crown Prosecution Service said: "We're not able to speculate on what may or may not happen, given that there are inquiries going on into what went wrong in this case."
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Publication:South Wales Echo (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Jan 31, 2012
Words:335
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