Ilkeston criminal defence solicitor secures burglary acquittal
Ilkeston criminal defence solicitor Sarah Green recently dealt with a client before Derby Magistrates Court. He faced an allegation of commercial burglary of a shop in Ilkeston.
A torch was recovered from the burgled premises. The inference to be drawn was that the torch had been left by whoever burgled the premises. Upon analysis, the DNA of Sarah’s client was found on the torch.
DNA link to offence
Of course a torch is a moveable item. As a result, DNA being on the torch was unlikely to lead to any irresistable conclusions. The DNA alone was unlikely to prove he committed a burglary.
As a result, the prosecution sought to bolster the evidence with applications to the court that other information be before the court. An application was made at a pre-trial hearing.
Bad Character and Hearsay Opposed
This additional information was intended to be in two forms. Firstly there was a bad character application to try and show that Sarah’s client had been responsible for similar offending in the past. The prosecution intended this to show a propensity for such offending.
Secondly, the prosecution sought to place hearsay evidence before the court that implicated our client in the offending.
Through careful preparation and argument on the key provisions Sarah was able to persuade a District Judge that neither piece of evidence should be admitted.
As a result the prosecution was left simply with the torch and DNA evidence. Although the prosecution had promised to review whether there was a reasonable likelihood of conviction, this review had not taken place by the morning of the trial.
Prosecution guidelines say case should be dropped
Anticipating this, Sarah had attended court with the Crown Prosecution Service’s own guidelines on charging in cases where the evidence was similar to this one. It was perhaps disappointing that the prosecution was surprised when Sarah referred them to the guidelines that suggested any charge would need to be supported by other evidence.
Sarah and her client were then even more disappointed at the time it took to review what appeared to be a straightforward point – in the event it was the entire morning.
Representation under criminal legal aid
Eventually, however, a decision was made to offer no evidence. Sarah’s client was found not guilty, the charge dismissed. He had the benefit of criminal legal aid that means that Sarah’s representation was free of charge to him.
Contact an Ilkeston criminal defence solicitor
Despite the lack of police station or court in Ilkeston, we have maintained an office in the town. We are now the only firm providing legally aided criminal law advice and representation. We hope that clients will see the benefit of this decision to them.
If you face a police investigation or court proceedings and wish to contact Ilkeston criminal defence solicitor Sarah Green then please telephone her on 0115 9441233 or email her here. Our Ilkeston office can be found here.