The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) say a charge brought against Darren Gee, now Darren Trainer, was treated “no differently” to any other case.
Mr Trainer, a former gang member, was charged after he was accused of illegally carrying a pair of garden secateurs at Liverpool Lime Street station on October 10, 2019.
According to the charge, he had “without good reason or lawful authority” at the train station “an article which had a blade or was sharply pointed, namely secateurs”.
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Mr Trainer pleaded not guilty to the charge, and the 42-year-old was due to stand trial this week following court delays as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
He said he was in possession of the secateurs but said he had “good reason” as he had been using them to garden.
But the CPS dropped the charge at the last minute after a top Liverpool judge questioned “whether the Crown realistically have a prospect of persuading a jury”.
Judge Andrew Menary, QC, said: “I would like to know why [the Crown] think it passes the evidential standard in this case.”
The judge said he wondered if the Crown were pursuing a trial because of who the defendant was.
Mr Trainer, of no fixed address, previously served 18 years in jail for organising the murder of an innocent man in 2004, and has since spoken to the ECHO about his enduring sense of guilt.
Following a short adjournment Jonathan Duffy, prosecuting, said the Crown “now take the view there is no realistic prospect of conviction”.
As a result a verdict of not guilty was returned and Mr Trainer was discharged.
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After the Crown offered no evidence Mr Trainer told the ECHO he was now “able to get on with my life”.
The Crown have since said the case was treated “no differently” to any other case and said there was “further evidence from police” that prompted the view there was now “no realistic prospect of a conviction”.
Keith Drummond, District Crown Prosecutor, CPS Mersey-Cheshire said: “This matter was originally charged by the police.
“The CPS has a duty to keep its cases under constant review, and when this case was referred to us, we concluded that there was sufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction and that the case had been properly charged.
“The finding that there was a realistic prospect of a conviction was based on the prosecutor’s objective assessment of the evidence and this case was treated no differently than any other case.
“However, following the eventual receipt of further evidence from the police, the reviewing lawyer took the view that there was no longer a realistic prospect of a conviction in this case and no evidence was offered at court. “
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