Success Stories

Not Guilty of Conspiracy to Supply Class A Drugs

By Amy Cox  |  16.06.2021

On 4 January 2018 legal aid was transferred to this firm in respect of a defendant facing one charge of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs. He subsequently faced a 31 day trial at Derby Crown Court which began only 18 days after legal aid had been transferred.

Prior to and during trial significant effort and resource was used to ensure the case was ready. This was a large scale conspiracy involving 10 defendants and spanning a period of 18 months in 2014 and 2015. The evidence included police surveillance, searches and seizures, and a large amount of telephone evidence. The telephone evidence related to calls between the defendants, as well as the content of messages obtained from phone downloads. We prepared a defence bundle of material to support his case, including material we gathered from the download of his phone, putting messages the Crown were seeking to rely upon in context. At the conclusion of his trial the jury were hung, and the Crown proceeded to re-trial.

As a result of Court delays, the re-trial in this case was not listed until May 2021. The delay in itself was extremely difficult for the defendant, who had to wait 3 years and 2 months between the conclusion of his first trial and beginning of his re-trial. As a result of the delay and changes to the re-trial date he also had new Counsel for re-trial and a new paralegal on his legal team.

In preparation for re-trial further work was undertaken on the defendant’s phone download, and a phone expert was also instructed to assist in respect of further evidence raised by the Crown following the defendant’s evidence at his first trial.

After a 16 day trial, and 5 years and 6 months after his original arrest, the defendant was unanimously acquitted and able to put this matter behind him. He was emotional in thanking Amy Cox for all her help and support and Counsel was ‘grateful to those instructing me for my comprehensive instructions and for the attention to detail given by them over a very protracted period of time’.

Counsel instructed in the original trial was Michael Maher of Exchange Chambers, and paralegal at the time Oliver Kavanagh, is now Counsel at 15 New Bridge Street.
Counsel instructed for the re-trial was Stephen Donnelly of Drystone Chambers. The case was prepared by our Head of Litigation Amy Cox, assisted for re-trial by paralegal Connie Kyriacou.

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