Colston 4: Criminal court case could be referred to the Court of Appeal over ‘confusion’

The Attorney General Suella Braverman said the verdict was ‘causing confusion’

The criminal court case over the toppling of the Edward Colston statue could be referred to Court of Appeal, said the Attorney General who is ‘carefully considering’ the move.

Rhian Graham, 30, Milo Ponsford, 26, and Sage Willoughby, 22, and Jake Skuse, 33, wereall cleared of criminal damage at Bristol Crown Court over the incident in June 2020.

Now, the Attorney General, Suella Braverman, says she is considering sending the case of the Court of Appeal for a review.

She said the process, which would not impact the result, would allow senior judges to clarify points of law for future cases.

She said the result to clear all the defendants was ‘causing confusion’

The acquittal cannot be overturned and the defendants cannot be retried without fresh evidence.

Under the Criminal Justice Act 1972, the Attorney General can use her power to ask a higher court to clarify a point of law.

The acquittal of all four defendants has led to a debate over the criminal justice system, with some concerned about how the result could affect future proceedings.

The defendants did not deny involvement in the incident, instead claiming the presence of the statue was a hate crime and it was therefore not an offence to remove it.

Former justice secretary Robert Buckland defended the jury system, but described the verdict in the Colston case as “perverse”.

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