Leeds: ‘Trumped-up charges brought by the police’

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A “second strand” to the defendants’ defence may wish to explore whether police have “trumped up” charges against them, jurors were told.

All three men were tried and convicted for conspiracy to murder and other charges in 2009.

At that trial, the prosecution alleged that the voices heard within the Audi RS6 were Pearman, Baxter and, on occasion, Dennis Slade.

The defendants appealed their convictions. The convictions were quashed and a retrial ordered.

Mr Greaney explained: “At this trial the prosecution do not allege that the defendants were in the Audi RS6, but we argue that the circumstances nonetheless provide a compelling case that the defendants were acting in concert with those who were.”

The barrister continued: “The defence wish to explore whether the police knew all along that the defendants were not the men in the car and therefore knowingly permitted the case to be conducted first time around on a false basis.

“Were the police determined to secure a conviction against innocent men at all costs, the defence will invite you to consider?

“That is an allegation of the utmost seriousness.”