Duo found guilty of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice

07/11/2017

Two men, Shahrear Miah and Abdilahi Ahmed were found guilty today (7 November) at Leeds Crown Court of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice. Five other defendants - Raja Hussain, Jonaade Hussain, Waqas Ahmad, Zafarullah Ahmad and Jamie Lee Lawson pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing.

The seven defendants conspired together to offer money to jurors in a trial which took place at Leeds Crown Court in February 2017. That trial centred around a 'cash for crash' insurance fraud, in which a plot was hatched to collide deliberately with another vehicle, in order to claim compensation from the insurance company for 'injuries' sustained.

The 'accident' was staged in Beeston, Leeds in September 2014. The impact killed the 88 year old passenger in the targeted car. Four defendants were duly charged with manslaughter, conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and conspiracy to defraud and sentenced to a total of over 37 years in prison.

Julian Briggs, from the CPS said: "These seven defendants conspired together to pervert the course of justice by offering £500 each to five of the jurors in the 'cash for crash' trial to return not guilty verdicts, or to disrupt proceedings to such an extent that a re-trial was forced.

"Analysis of CCTV and mobile phone evidence obtained by the police enabled the CPS to show that the defendants had identified the jurors as they assembled outside court after the fire alarm had been deliberately triggered by one of the defendants. Having identified the jurors in this way, five of them were approached separately in a bid to persuade them to return specific verdicts.

"However, events did not unfold as the conspirators anticipated. The jurors immediately and properly reported to the Judge what had happened, the whole jury was discharged, and the verdicts were returned by the Judge himself. Three of the four defendants were duly convicted of the very serious offence of manslaughter, and they were all convicted of conspiracy to defraud.

"This was a cynical and blatant attempt to pervert the course of justice which was foiled by the commendably swift action of the jurors who had been targeted. Attempts to undermine the true course of justice will be dealt with severely."

The defendants will be sentenced on 9 and 10 November at Leeds Crown Court.

Notes

  • Julian Briggs is a Senior Crown Prosecutor in Yorkshire and Humberside’s Complex Casework Unit