Wednesday, 10 December 2014
The Director of Public Prosecutions had only just made her statement confirming that the evidence was strong in the case case against Eleanor, and thus vindicating me, when Mr de Freitas struck back.
He had contacted the Daily Telegraph to publish a press release and also wrote and article in The Guardian authored by himself stating that what the DPP had said was wrong and that the evidence in the case against his daughter was based on "rape myths".
This was meant to be a day if vindication for me, the day when the news was focused on the DPP's statement. But no. Mr de Freitas stole that moment from me.
He was saying his daughter was victim and that I was guilty, all over again.
It was an ambush designed to confuse the public.
Once again I was under attack.
But this time I was going to take legal action. This time I was going to sue him for libel.
I had been amazingly patient over the last 5 weeks, but this was the final straw. There are only a certain amount of times that one can put up with being accused of being a rapist and this was the 7th time he had done so.
I called up my lawyer. We were going to take de Freitas to court.
Tuesday, 9 December 2014
Director of Public Prosecutions: "Evidence including text messages and CCTV footage directly contradicted the account Ms de Freitas gave to the police"
Ever since the press had come out over a month ago I had been waiting for the DPP to make a statement about the case. But no one knew what she was going to speak out, last of all me.
She had been heavily criticised by Mr de Freitas in the press, so it was expected she would confirm that the evidence in the case against Eleanor was strong.
What she had to say would be really important. The DPP is effectively in charge of all the criminal cases in England and Wales. That's everything from murder to speeding fines. Her word would be taken seriously. If she said there was evidence to show that I was innocent then that would be amazing.
Finally on the 9th December 2014 she spoke out. Paragraph six comments upon the evidence. Paragraph eight comments on the mental health.
Eleanor de Freitas’ tragic death was just days before she was due to stand trial for perverting the course of justice. The pending inquest will deal with the circumstances surrounding her death and I do not want to interfere with that process. However the case has understandably raised questions about private prosecutions in these types of cases and why the CPS took over and continued this particular case.
Having considered the detail and the issues raised by the family, I am satisfied that the decision making in this case was correct and that it was made in accordance with our policies and guidance. I have separately met with Ms de Freitas' father, David de Freitas, to explain in more detail our decision and the evidence informing it, much of which is personal and sensitive and therefore inappropriate for the CPS to make public. This statement is aimed at explaining the reasoning behind our decision making and not at exploring the evidence in the case, as the allegations concerned have not been properly tested in court. Notwithstanding the correct decision making, this case has highlighted a number of wider issues which I have also discussed with Ms de Freitas' family and I have welcomed their input.
Cases of perverting the course of justice or wasting police time in relation to an alleged false rape claim are rare, but where there is sufficient evidence to show that a false claim may have been made, the potential harm to those affected must be very carefully considered and an appropriate decision made. This case was unprecedented and one of the most complex I have seen in that not only did it require careful consideration of Ms de Freitas' mental health, it was also the subject of a private prosecution without a full police investigation.
Parliament has preserved the right of individuals to bring private prosecutions. This right is limited for some offences by the need for my consent but no such limit applies to cases of perverting the course of justice. When we receive a request to intervene, as we did in this case, we must consider that request and apply the same test, set out in the Code for Crown Prosecutors, as we would to any other prosecution. If, as here, the case does meet our test we have two options. One is to leave the case in the hands of the private prosecutor, the other is to take the case over and conduct it. Our Legal Guidance states that private prosecutions should be taken over and prosecuted where the offence is serious and also where the case is one "that merits the prosecution being conducted by a public prosecuting authority rather than by a private individual". Given the test was met in this case, had the CPS not taken over proceedings, a private prosecution would have continued. In my view, given the nature of the allegations, that would not have been appropriate.
At this stage it is important to stress that rape is an incredibly serious crime which remains under-reported, partly because victims fear that they will not be believed. Nothing in this unique and tragic case should put anyone else off from making a complaint of rape or sexual assault. The CPS has done a huge amount of work in recent years to ensure that all the very difficult aspects of cases involving allegations of sexual offences where vulnerable parties are involved are considered correctly. Highly skilled rape specialist lawyers deal with all rape and serious sexual offence cases and they are alive to the signs of possible intimidation, humiliation and shame, and self-blaming which can be displayed in behaviours previously thought as potentially undermining to some allegations of rape. As a culmination of almost four years' work raising awareness of the sensitivities and issues surrounding cases involving allegedly false rape claims, we are also in the process of updating our guidance on prosecuting cases of Perverting the Course of Justice where it is alleged a false claim has been made.
However, the evidence in this case was strong and having considered it in light of all of our knowledge and guidance on prosecuting sexual offences and allegedly false rape claims, it is clear there was sufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction for perverting the course of justice. This was evidence including text messages and CCTV footage that directly contradicted the account Ms de Freitas gave to the police. This was not assumption based on her behaviour or actions which fall into myths and stereotypes about how alleged rape victims should behave. It was on this basis that we concluded that there was a realistic prospect of proving that the rape allegation made by Ms de Freitas was false, and there was also a strong public interest in prosecuting due to the seriousness of the alleged offence which was maintained by the defendant for some time and which led to the arrest of an individual.
I must remind everyone that no case has been proved against Ms de Freitas and so no conclusions can be made or stated as fact. Indeed the test that we must satisfy to bring a case to court - that it has a realistic prospect of conviction - is very different to the higher test of being sure of a persons guilt beyond reasonable doubt which a jury must decide upon.
I am satisfied that prosecutors had taken the necessary steps in assuring themselves that Ms de Freitas' mental health had been properly considered. This was in the form of a very detailed report by a consultant forensic psychiatrist instructed by Ms de Freitas' legal team, who also took into account the views of Ms de Freitas' consultant psychiatrist. That medical assessment was clear. The doctor instructed by Ms de Freitas' legal representative recommended that she was aware of the implications of making a false allegation, as she was alleged to have done, and was fit to stand trial. We do not take on these kinds of prosecutions lightly, but the medical evidence provided to us could not justify dropping such a serious case. No further representations were made to us as to Ms de Freitas' health, which would of course have been carefully considered.
There has been speculation that the police did not agree with the prosecution for various reasons. However, the police never undertook an investigation into the alleged perverting the course of justice nor did they consider all the material provided to us by the private prosecution. They were therefore not in a position to form a view on whether there was sufficient evidence to prosecute.
Bringing such a prosecution without the support of the police from the outset is extremely unusual. However police engagement should have been secured by the CPS at a far earlier stage than did in fact happen when a police disclosure officer was provided in March 2014. Although the majority of the material was provided to the defence, Ms de Freitas' police interview was only provided at a late stage.
If the CPS is invited to consider a private prosecution and the conclusion is reached that either the evidential or the public interest test is not met then we will, of course, take over the case and discontinue it. If, on the other hand, both these tests are met the question remains whether the prosecution should be conducted by the CPS or by the private prosecutor. As a result of this case, I intend to make it clear to prosecutors that, where the allegation in question arises out of an alleged false claim of rape, it would be an exceptional course for it to be left in the hands of the private prosecutor.
I have expressed my very personal and heartfelt sympathies to Ms de Freitas' family and I hope that I have been able to explain the actions of the CPS to them, although I know that will be little comfort for the terrible and tragic loss of their daughter.
Alison Saunders, Director of Public Prosecutions
Friday, 5 December 2014
Letter to Lisa Longstaff (of the charity Women Against Rape) - re maintaining anonymity for those accused of rape
Crossroads Women's Centre
25 Wolsey Mews
London NW5 2DX
5th December 2014
Dear Ms Longstaff,
I was the Private Prosecutor in the case against Eleanor De Freitas
I have read you and your colleagues comments on my case with interest. Firstly please let me say that I am completely against rape. I have two female friends who were raped and never reported it to the police. One of which I dated and one of which was even a witness for the CPS and supported this case.
Please find USB stick enclosed. I want you to see with your own eyes the CCTV of me and EDF the morning after the alleged rape. The CCTV captured us in Ann Summers on 24th December 2012 at 11:24am. You can see EDF chose multiple sex toys including a couple of vibrators and a vibrating egg. On top of that she spent around £100 on lube, although you cannot see it clearly in the video. The total bill in Ann Summers came to £340.00
On top of this evidence are statements of others whom she told a different version of events to. As well as phone evidence showing a number of text messages consistent with a false allegation. That’s three types of evidence. CCTV, phone reports and witnesses.
Despite this wealth of evidence the CPS took three months (Sept-Dec 2013) to consider the case. It went through all the different departments. It was even ratified by Alison Levitt QC who are the time was Adviser to the DPP. I would also point out that Alison Levitt studied for a 17 month period false allegations of rape for the entire country and wrote the report herself. She an expert on the subject.
With regards to EDF’s mental health and “vulnerability”. Her own defense lawyers gave the court two reports on a voluntary basis that said she was fit for trial. Not only that but the reports described her a more able than most, manipulative, highly intelligent and even machiavellian. Those are the words of the psychiatrist who was chosen by her own lawyers. They didn’t have to serve those reports to the court but they did, and it was done on a voluntary basis. That’s what the CPS based their decision on when considering her mental health. Two reports that said she was not only fine, but also manipulative. Both reports were written by psychiatrists of her own choosing.
I note that you say that women should not be prosecuted for making false allegations of rape. I also note that Ms Avalos says that those who are falsely accused can bring civil defamation proceedings instead of prosecuting.
Ms Avalos is mistaken. Complaints made to the police (in the UK) are immune from defamation proceedings. There is a test case called Westcott v Westcott which was heard in the Court Of Appeal a few years ago. Even if you can prove that a complaint is false and has been done with malice you can still not bring defamation proceedings.
I am all for catching rapists and getting more convictions. But the problem at the moment is naming alleged rapists in public causes serious problems. If there had been anonymity laws in place for the accused as well as the alleged victim I would have not needed to bring my private prosecution.
As soon as you start naming people you are “upping the ante”. Those falsely accused are going to want to clear their names. The only mechanism for clearing ones name is a Private Prosecution. You may have seen my article on the Mail on Sunday? Underneath the online version are a lot of comments 90% of which support the prosecution. That’s what the public think about it. They believe that it was fair.
I note (from previous press) that you don’t want to have anonymity for those accused, but then you do need a mechanism for them to clear their names. Wouldn’t you agree? At the moment this is the Private Prosecution. I would welcome any creative ideas on how the innocent can clear their names, as an alternative to this. As I said before false police reports are immune from libel so you can’t go in the civil courts asking for an apology. That’s a big problem.
I seriously believe that anonymity for those accused (until conviction) would help your cause. If the innocent are not named then they are less likely to push for legal action and commence private prosecutions. By naming the innocent as “alleged rapists” you are guaranteed that what happened to me will happen again. There will be more tears and more tragedy.
For your information I would also like to point out that EDF has a history of making false rape complaints. That was part of the prosecution evidence. A few years ago she made a false rape complaint against another man. Police answered your prayers that time and did nothing in that case. As a result she did it again. A textbook example of how false allegations cannot be ignored. This is not yet in the press but will be when the IPCC investigation is complete.
I am all for catching and convicting rapists, but all in balance please, let’s protect the innocent as well.
Sunday, 30 November 2014
I had had enough.
Three weeks ago Mr de Freitas had accused me of rape.
I tried to make peace and explain that there had been "wires crossed" but his lawyers ignored me.
Then he had gone and made a report of harassment against me.
Fine then. I am going to the press and I am going to tell my side of the story. I am going to tell the truth and it's not going to paint a pretty picture.
I was so nervous when I met the reporter from the Mail on Sunday. I had never done a press interview before. The day before I had bought a suit especially for the occasion, for there would be photographer taking pictures of me for the article as well. I didn't really want my photo in the press but no photo = no interview.
We met at Soho Hotel in London where the Mail on Sunday had rented a suite, she turned on her tape recorder and I spoke for almost five hours non stop telling her my story. It was so nice for someone to listen to my side of the story. My lawyer was also there to show her the evidence.
When I got to the part about Eleanor being an escort she said "I know, the editor already knows." Wow, these newspapers are clever. But it was still very much under the radar in the press, no one was reporting on that aspect of the case.
My main goal was to clear my name, and for them to publish some of the Ann Summers CCTV. that would be amazing.
The following day I met the Mail on Sunday photographer and we went to Kensington Gardens to take some photos by the fountains. He was so nice to me, very understanding. I remember that day well. It was almost December but it was a beautiful Autumn day.
Everything was complete, the interview was done and the pictures taken. I had to wait just two days and the whole world would know I was innocent.
The night before the article was due to come out I checked into a hotel. I didn't want to be at home in case reporters came round. They had come round to my flat (and also my office) before and it was really intimidating.
I had booked the presidential suite at this swanky hotel near the airport, all booked on air miles which i had yet to put to good use. The room had a separate living room and the most amazing bathroom with stand alone bather, steam room and shower. I spent the entire evening in a bathrobe lounging around ordering room service. It was so nice to finally unwind before the story came out. For the first time in weeks I was feeling relaxed.
In the morning millions of people around the country would be waking up to my story both in print and online.
At 9.59pm I received a text message. The story was live! A friend had just seen the story on the MailOnline website and it was at the very top of the webpage. I couldn't believe it.
I spoke to many people that evening, with each person congratulating me. The story explained that there was evidence to show that Eleanor was guilty and had in fact been leading a double life as an escort.
I slept like a log. I slept so well. Finally I was vindicated.
In the morning I felt normal again, after weeks of continuous stress. I couldn't wait to see the hard copy version in the Mail on Sunday.
This is a picture of me reading the Mail on Sunday article at the breakfast table of the hotel.
|Reading the Mail on Sunday article at breakfast.|
Tuesday, 18 November 2014
Never have I been so stressed out in my entire life than the last couple of weeks.
I was so full of nervous energy, I could not stop moving. I was walking or running 15 miles per day.
I was a total wreck.
The blast of press occurred on the 6th and 7th of November, but in the age of Google it doesn't go away.
All of David de Freitas lies are online. People are quoting him from his Radio interview.
There are thousands upon thousands of comments on various web forums talking about how Eleanor is the victim, when in reality I am the victim not her.
I had just landed in Athens, Greece. I was not on holiday but had to go a for a business meeting the next day. The trip had already been cancelled due to my stress levels.
I got to my hotel room and my mobile rang. It was pretty late, around 10pm.
It was my stepmother. She explained that my father and her had received a lengthy letter from someone anonymous saying "he is a dead man walking" and threatening my family with rape and possible death.
Just what we needed. My stepmother reported it to the police as a precaution.
The next day after my business meeting the phone rang again. It was the Police. I was surprised at how quickly they had come back me regarding the death threat.
But no. It wasn't about the death threat. It was about me.
Mr de Freitas had reported me for harassment.
What the hell was going on???
He had gone to the press saying that I had raped his daughter. In response to his press I had written him a single letter asking him to stop. This was not a case of harassment.
Here's the letter I wrote that he complained about:
From: Alexander Economou
Date: Thursday, 6 November 2014 at 21:04
To: David De Freitas
Subject: URGENT - CPS EVIDENCE RE ELEANOR DE FREITAS
Dear Mr De Freitas,
The CPS evidence is:
- 25 mins of CCTV of her and I in Ann Summers at 11:30am 24 December 2012. Captured on 6 cameras in full colour high res. Cameras shows us kissing, laughing and buying £340 of sex toys which we leave with. Four large carrier bags of sex toys.
- Forensically downloaded phones of 3rd parties which show her to have sent messages from my flat at 9am 24th December which say "I really like him" and "we had huge fun together"
- Forensically downloaded phone messages of 3rd parties which show her to have said on 25th December 2012 "I hate him right now" and "he won’t see me"
- A confession email to me on 3rd January saying "I am sorry for the trouble I have caused you" [referring to her lies]
- She had also made a false rape complaint against another man in similar circumstances which was part of the evidence.
- Half a dozen websites that show your daughter providing "massage services" from 2010, which I attach. This can be confirmed by forensically downloaded phone reports which contain messages that tell me "I am at the house of a madam". One hour of CCTV in Harrods (from 30 cameras in full colour) show her to be spending thousands of pounds in cash. She had wads of cash.
- Please note that there is currently an ongoing IPCC investigation into Police Misconduct with regards to them not investigating properly. This is still open and not concluded. I have communicated with the IPCC as recently as yesterday about this.
Please be aware that I am the victim of a very serious crime. Any press or statements that show the opposite of the facts or that name me will be taken very seriously and legal action will be taken. I will be meeting my lawyers first thing tomorrow.
If you make any further comment twisting the facts then I will say this: "Eleanor de Freitas and I went on a date. The following day I performed some internet searches and found out she was a prostitute. At 6:30pm on 24th December I told her I didn’t want to see her. She then got very upset. Between 24th December and 4th January she pleaded with me (and my friends) to see me again, I refused. She went to the police to make a false allegation of rape for revenge purposes. It also turns out she had done this in the past. I have 10 lever arch files of evidence to support this. The issue is not why did the CPS prosecute her, the question is why was she allowed to make two completely separate false allegations of rape and get away with it [the police] when there was overwhelming evidence against her".
Please pass this to your lawyers.
|The death threat my family received.|
Sunday, 16 November 2014
I never wanted to go to the press. I never wanted any attention or focus on me.
When David de Freitas went to the press I wrote him a letter warning him to stop. I asked him to stop and wrote to his lawyers.
I could have gone to the press and revealed the truth abut his daughter being a liar and a prostitute but I didn't. I gave him a chance to calm down and to stop spreading lies. It was in both our interests for the press to die down.
Unfortunately he and his lawyers weren't having any of it. All they had to do was to call it peace and we could both get on with our lives. But no.
I didn't even want to take legal action at this stage. Even though he had accused me of rape I was still willing to let to go... as long as he promised to stop making any further false accusations.
Here's is an email chain between me and his lawyer Harriet Wistrich. She never got back to me...
From: Alexander Economou
Sent: 14 November 2014 17:37
To: Harriet Wistrich
Subject: Eleanor de Freitas case
I was the prosecutor on this case. Your office gave me this email address. I called earlier.
I know the family hate me, but please could we have a dialogue? I think there's been some wires crossed and I would like to give you some info to help the media situation for us both. I can't help thinking they don't know the full picture. As the prosecutor I can tell you pretty much everything you want to know to fill in the gaps.
Can we have a telephone chat at some point? Would this be ok? My number is 07XXXXX.
On 16 Nov 2014, at 10:35, Harriet Wistrich wrote:
Could you explain to me what you mean by "help the media situation fo us both"?
On 16/11/2014, 12:45, Alexander Economou wrote:
And thank you for you reply, it is very much appreciated. Please if I could just give you some information.
The police are currently under investigation at the moment regarding a complaint I made in February 2013 (which they are re-investigating) and the IPCC are also investigating another complaint I made in July 2014.
I will forward you the IPCC letters now. I will also fwd you a letter from the CPS, just so you know that what the IPCC letter contains is true.
I sent a paralegal to visit the court on 24th January 2014. He took an attndence note which I will forward to you. You will see that it was the police who were refusing to co-operate with the CPS when it came to the unsued. What were the police hiding? A couple of years ago EDF had made a seperate false allegation of rape agaiant another man, and the police took no action that time. As a result she went on to falsely accuse me of rape. The police did not disclose this info when the CPS were considering taking over the case, they went on the evidence alone. It was only after the polcie had to hand over unused evidence that the CPS found out about this. That first report of rape was very obviously false (as per polcie documents) and the CPS were going to use that at trial.
When you look at the EBR attridges file you will see that EDF was trying to do a deal with the CPS to plead guilty to wasting polcie time and the CPS said no. The evidence was overwhelming. That morning she killed herself her lawyers told her to plead guilty. Kaim Todner had also told her to plead guilty.
The medical reports are extremely damning. They both call her a manipulative and sophisticated liar.
At the moment the press seems to think there is “no evidence” when I have in my possetion CCTV on 5 cameras showing EDF and I buying £340 sex toys for 25 minutes AFTER the alledged incidenct. As well as statements from 20 other people, 6 phone reports etc etc.
Right now I have been labelled a rapist by David De Freitas. I have to defend myself ok? I will be compelled to release the Ann Summers CCTV in due course as well as photos of all the sex toys which are official exhibits etc etc. Note the CCTV was collected by my defence lawyers so I can release it at any time and there are no legal issues.
In the Daily Mail David De Freitas says that I was “harssing” and sending him constant texts and voicemails. It couldn’t be firther from the truth, in fact I have a recording of the police, saying exactly the opposite! In that recording the polcie state EDF and the father were making a false harssment report to de-rail the private prosecution.
I will now fwd you a number of documents to show you what I am saying is true.
Thursday, 6 November 2014
I was sitting at my desk finishing up on some work when my lawyer (from the Private Prosecution) telephoned me in the early evening of 6 November 2014 and told me she had been contacted by the BBC. I hadn't spoken to her in a while. We had finished the litigation over six months ago.
I did a few searches online and found an article about my case in the Guardian Newspaper. It had been published at 720pm that day. It was at that moment that everything fell apart for me. My life has not been the same sine and that month was a terrible, terrible time where I was the subject of a huge amount of comment in the national press, in social media, and among my friends and acquaintances.
I contacted the prosecution witnesses and told them what was happening. We agreed not to speak to the press and preserve our privacy. We were all very concerned about our privacy. I also contact my father and colleagues from my work and told them not to speak to the press. I contacted on of my neighbours and also asked hi not to speak to anyone. One of my friends told me to look at Twitter and I saw one new Tweet after another popping up.
That night i did not sleep. Not even 20 minutes. I stayed completely awake all night long, reading the various tweets and monitoring the internet. I was very nervous about the BBC Radio 4 today program, I had no idea what was going to happen. At Around 730am I resumed contact with my lawyer. At 810 David de Freitas was on the radio and spoke for around 10 minutes.
|David de Freitas speaks to the press on November 7th 2014|
I listened to it live. I could not believe what I was hearing. He was saying that he daughter had been the victim of a rape and that there was no evidence that she had lied. What about the CCTV of her buying sex toys? What about the text messages of her apologising? What about the messages of her being angry at the breakup? What about all the other witnesses that she had told a different story to?
David de Freitas did not tell the press about any of the evidence. The press never reported any of that because they did not know about it. Mr de Freitas wanted to hide that, he wanted to hide the truth and he just brushed any suggestion that his daughter being guilty as a rape myth. David de Freitas was lying to the nation.
The Today Programme interview which was on BBC Radio 4 is one of the biggest breakfast radio shows in the UK. It is a very serious current affairs programme. He was lying to millions of people. people all over the country who now believed that Eleanor de Freitas was the victim of rape and had been wrongly prosecuted. Twitter and social media were going mad. The interview lasted for 10 minutes, it was one lie after another.
By 9am the entire country was talking about this case. Every news channel, every radio station was covering the story about the rape "victim" who had taken her own life.
The first article had been retweeted over 600 times. But there were many other articles coming up. People were discussing the case on TV, there were guest speakers from rape charities.
Even Bianca Jagger (who has 82,0000 follower on twitter) was tweeting about the case. She said: "Extraordinary testimony from David de Freitas about the CPS conduct in the case of his daughter Eleanor de Freitas".
By the afternoon the story was being covered by Sky News, BBC, Guardian, Telegraph, Daily Mail, Independent, Express, Metro, Sky, Huffington Post, The week, ITV, Evening Standard, London24, The Sun as well as being featured in many smaller blogs.
As soon as the Radio interview was finished the phone started to ring. It was friends who had either heard the Radio interview or had read about the story in other news.
Saturday, 21 June 2014
When Eleanor died I could smell trouble was brewing on the horizon.
It had been about two months since her death and thankfully no media had clocked the death, it hadn't been reported and it was below the radar.
Whilst it was very sad and shocking that she had a died, it did cause me a bit of a dilema, that now I would be unable to prove my innocence. If this got to press then it would be more difficult for me to defend myself. If she was found guilty at trial then it's quite easy to persuade people that you are innocent. You just say that she was found guilty of lying. So I was nervous of press. I was nervous her parents might start becoming angry and thats exactly what started happening.
In June and July her mother Miranda de Freitas started contacting witnesses and sending them threatening messages. The witnesses contacted police who attended her house and gave her a verbal warning but this wasn't the end of it, I could smell trouble on the horizon.
Little did I know that Eleanor's father, David de Freitas was already planning his attack and to get his revenge, for he blamed me and the CPS for the death of his daughter.
In four months time he would drop a surprise atomic bomb of press that would almost end up killing me.
Tuesday, 8 April 2014
Gregg Hands MP
House of Commons
London SW1A OAA
8th April 2014
Dear Gregg Hands,
Re: Eleanor De Frietas, false rape allegation.
I’m afraid I have some bad news. On Friday 4th April, Eleanor de Freitas took her own life. She was due to stand trial yesterday at Southwark Crown Court, for perverting the course of justice. This is truly is an awful thing to have happened and my heart goes out to the family who are innocent bystanders. Even though she did what she did, no one wished this upon her.
Yesterday morning there was a short hearing at Southwark Crown Court (which a paralegal attended to take notes) where her defence barrister told the judge that she had was found hanged by her mother on Friday afternoon at the family home, where she had left a note saying that she felt “trapped by the system”. The file was closed by the judge. There were no press present.
Whilst waiting to enter the court yesterday, the defence solicitor approached my paralegal (assuming it was a member of the public) and stated: This is an awful case in which there is a girl on trial who should not have been on trial and she has taken her life.
I thought I should tell you as soon as possible, as it is likely that this may come to press in the future and could be discussion point, with regards to false allegations of rape in general. In the meantime I will be taking proactive measures to keep this out of the press, as I do not want my name associated with this.
However, once things have blown over there are things that need to be addressed. In the last 16 months my lawyers spent 900+ man hours on this case. During that time we had multiple communications with the police and CPS and we learnt rather a lot. The CPS were very open with my lawyers and we worked with them for the last 5 months. I can tell you that it appears she had made false allegations against another man prior to the one she made against me and that the CPS were going to use that in the trial.
In my last letter I explained how the police were refusing to co-operate with the CPS and refusing to disclose information. (This was publicly stated at court on the 24th January 2014, by the CPS barrister). Were the police trying to hide information that showed the girl to have lied before? If so, why? Also, if they knew she had a history of false allegations then why did the police never interview the girl and ask her what she was doing in an Ann Summers shop buying sex toys, or ask her questions about the various messages she had sent stating that she really liked me – in the hours after the alleged attack. Despite all of this, it appears that the girl was never interviewed by the police as a suspect - ever.
In 2013 the CPS published a report on false allegations of rape. In the report they said that the DPP had studied all false rape allegations (brought to them by police) for 17 months. From my experience ( my lawyers working alongside them for the last 5 months) the CPS have been very thorough in this case and their decision making process has been very good. It seems they have a system set in place for dealing with these complicated matters and it works. Unfortunately you need rather a lot of evidence, but when it is there they take it seriously.
However when it comes to the police, and more specifically the metropolitan police it seems the opposite is true. They don’t know how to handle these matters. There is confusion as to what the law is. There seems to be no system in place. There seems to be a conflict of interest and a fear of prosecuting those who make false allegations.
If there is anything positive to come from this awful ordeal then it would be to try to persuade the Metropolitan Police to review how they handle these types of complaints, especially when there is evidence that the allegation was false. That would be my goal. Not right this second, but when things have calmed down. I have also written to Lord Campbell Savours telling him that I would be prepared to share the information related to this case with him, should that help his cause into finding a better way of handling these types of complaints.
Thank you for your help with this matter. It has been greatly appreciated. Hopefully something constructive can eventually come out of all this.