Ciaran Shiels solicitor represents Gordon Hutchinson and Drew King. He said today after notice was served that the PPS would not be prosecuting his clients almost five years after their 2008 arrests.

“We act on behalf of Drew King and Gordon Hutchinson. This is the second proposed prosecution of our clients in relation to this matter to collapse in the last five years.

In 2007, a career criminal with dozens of convictions for fraud, known to the public as “Witness A”, was introduced by the Sunday World to the PSNI REMIT Branch to have our clients arrested, charged and remanded into custody. Sworn evidence was given at contested bail hearings by Police to the effect that “Witness A” had been assessed by the Public Prosecution Service as a credible witness. At the time, we raised grave concerns as to this assessment.

Of even more concern was the treatment by the PSNI of Neil Hyde as an Assisting Offender under the current Supergrass Legislation, Serious questions now have to be asked of the PSNI Serious Crime Branch, who deemed Hyde to be a “Witness of Truth” and therefore eligible to avail of a massive reduction in sentence under the current Serious Organised Crime Act Provisions.”