News Criminal Defence 22nd Jun 2023

Eleanor Fox’s client acquitted of modern slavery offences at the close of the prosecution case

Eleanor Fox represented one of three defendants (“TM”) at Woolwich Crown Court charged with modern slavery offences. TM pleaded guilty to drug supply offences and to the possession of criminal property.

Operation Orochi was an investigation into a “county lines” drug dealing network that orchestrated the sale of crack cocaine and heroin in London and Bournemouth. TM was alleged by the prosecution to be the co-head of the drug line.

The case against TM was that he, together with others, had arranged the travel of two young people (“DR” and “JB”) who acted as drug line “runners”. The case centred on cell site evidence and call data records.

At the close of the prosecution case, the successful submission of no case to answer outlined key evidential deficiencies, namely the failure of the prosecution to adduce any evidence that TM knew that DR and JB were children and chose them for that reason, or that they were in fact under 18.

Counsel was instructed by Barry Cheeseman at Cheeseman’s Solicitors.


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