R – v – L

Croydon Magistrates Court proceedings

Making off without payment and use of counterfeit money

The following is a very good example of how our clients benefit from our effective preparation of cases, together with skilled advocacy when at court.

Our client was accused of making off without paying for fuel and using counterfeit money. He instructed the company fairly late in the proceedings; only 5 weeks prior to the trial. Once we were instructed, we undertook a full review of the evidence. It was apparent to us that various pieces of evidence were missing from the prosecution case. In particular:

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There was limited ‘continuity evidence’ concerning where the purported counterfeit notes had been kept between the time that they were first seized, to when they were analysed by the Bank of England.

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There was also no forensic evidence to directly link our client to the notes that he was alleged to have used.

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CCTV footage had not been served.

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Receipts to address the amount of fuel had not been served.

We used the time that we had available to write to the prosecution to address the above. Eventually, we managed to obtain a copy of the CCTV footage.

At trial, we cross examined the prosecution witnesses extensively. Those witnesses’ accounts were undermined by the CCTV footage. The lack of continuity and forensic evidence, together with non-disclosure of the receipts was raised.

The prosecution eventually offered no evidence concerning two of the charges. The magistrates found that there was no case for our client to answer concerning the remaining two. He was therefore acquitted of all matters and the case was dismissed. Our client left the court ecstatic.   

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