Client Acquitted of Racially Aggravated Public Order and Having an Offensive Weapon

Julie Stanhope has successfully represented a client charged with possessing an offensive weapon and racially aggravated public order offences before the City of London Magistrates’ Court.

The client, who had no previous convictions, faced the prospect of being convicted and receiving a damaging criminal record when he found himself facing an allegation that he had used racially abusive words or behaviour in a public place and had in his possession a lock knife. The client denied the racially abusive behaviour, and claimed that the knife in his possession was for a lawful purpose.

At his trial before the City of London Magistrates’ Court, Julie forcefully presented the defence case and pressed the fact that the client had a lawful excuse for possessing the knife. She also made pre-trial representations to the prosecution regarding the evidential weakness with the racially aggravated public order offence, which they then agreed to discontinue before the trial started. After considering the defence evidence the magistrates acquitted the defendant of the offensive weapon charge.

The client, who funded his case privately, was also awarded a Defence Costs Order to enable him to recover a proportion of his defence costs.