Published - Sep 25, 2023
Foster and Coleman recently acted for a dental surgeon in Crown Court proceedings for an offence of sexual assault. The allegation was made by a former member of his practice team and had been categorically denied throughout the initial investigation by police.
The defence case submitted that this allegation arose following the discovery by our client of a long running and extensive fraud committed against the practice by the staff member complainant and another member of the dental team, who had also provided a statement to police in support of the criminal allegation. The fraud involved a large number of online purchases with the practice debit card which were unrelated to the practice business and were personal purchases by the individuals involved.
The trial commenced earlier this year, but the Judge was forced to discharge the jury at the start of the second week of evidence. Information provided to the Prosecution team suggested that one of the principal prosecution witnesses had possibly engaged in discussions regarding the evidence given by other witnesses, as well as the content of the cross-examination by defence counsel. This was in direct contravention of the directions given by the Judge. The concerns were so grave that it was directed at the principal witness involved should be interviewed by police with a view to possible prosecution. A new trial date was fixed for 2024.
The investigation did take place and despite the prosecutions confirmation that no criminal charges would be brought against the witness concerned, it had prompted a further review of the case and the decision had been made by them to offer no evidence. A verdict of not guilty was entered by the Judge and our client was discharged from these proceedings.
Our client was represented throughout these proceedings by the fantastic Mr Matthew McDonagh of counsel.
Posted in Criminal Defence on Sep 25, 2023