Belfast Crown Court today dismissed all charges against Harry McMahon, his co-accused Geoffrey Ellis and David Power. All three men were Police Officers based in Tyrone and faced charges of allegedly perverting the course of justice in 2012.
The charges of perverting the course of public justice arose amid allegations surrounding the unauthorised removal of items from a locker which belonged to Ellis in Cookstown police station.
The Court found that it was “completely in the dark” about the nature of the underlying investigation that was apparently being conducted at the relevant time by the PSNI Professional Standards Department and which formed the grounds for the whole prosecution.
On the basis of a rank lack of evidence against Mr McMahon and his co-accused, the case was this morning dismissed by His Honour Judge Kerr QC who had first given the Prosecution a final chance to locate any of the critical evidence that he found to be clearly lacking.
The defendants were first arrested and interviewed in July 2012 and the investigation led to the loss of our client’s job as a Police Sergeant of many years standing.
Mr McMahon’s solicitor Ciaran Shiels of Madden & Finucane said after court:
“Our client co-operated fully with PSNI Service Improvement investigators. He at all times made the case that no criminality of any form could be interpreted from his actions. The Public Prosecution Service in this case should never have directed a prosecution against my client. The fact that the Crown Court dismissed this case at the earliest possible stage confirms our position.”