Leeds '˜cash for crash' manslaughter trial jury dismissed after jurors were offered bribes
A JURY hearing a case of an alleged '˜cash for crash' plot in which an innocent Leeds pensioner was killed has been discharged over claims that jurors have been offered bribes.
A judge today took the unusual decision of dismissing the jury panel at Leeds Crown Court and will continue to try the case alone.
The decision was made after the court heard jurors were filmed when the building was evacuated after a fire alarm was deliberately activated.
The court was also told some members of the jury had been approached as they left the court building and offered sums up to £500 in cash.
Mr Justice Goss said there had been a series of events which demonstrated “concerted attempts” to tamper with jurors.
The judge took the unusual step of using powers under section 46 of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 which allows him to continue to hear the case without a jury.
During the trial, the jury heard Betty Laird, 88, suffered fatal spinal injuries when the Renault Kangoo she was a passenger in was struck on Old Lane, Beeston, Leeds, on September 10, 2014.
The prosecution allege four men in a VW Passat who drove into the side of the Kangoo did so in order to make fraudulent injury compensation claims from insurance companies.
The alleged driver of the Passat, Sabbir Hussain, 25, and two alleged passengers, Raja Hussain, 30, and Shahrear Islam-Miah, 26, are on trial accused of manslaughter and conspiracy to commit fraud.
A fourth man, Muhammed Ubaidullah, has already pleaded guilty to manslaughter, conspiracy to commit fraud and attempting to pervert the court of justice.
Peter Moulson, QC, prosecuting, told the jury at the start of the trial.: “All were involved, we say, in what has come to be known as a cash for crash collision.”
Judge Goss adjourned the case after dismissing the jury. The trial will continue on Monday.