Here’s the tragic story
A former teacher Kato Harris, 38 was forced to give up his dream job and has said that he will never work with children again after being falsely accused of rape.
Last July a jury took just 15 minutes to acquit Harris as none of the allegations were true.
After a 17-month long police investigation and then the trial process the accuser a 14-year-old girl who cannot be named for legal reasons is free to enjoy her privileged life, whilst Harris’s life has been irreparably ripped apart.
Harris told The Sun this week that: “I had to give up my dream because of a crime I didn’t commit. I am unemployed, living in a bedsit and will soon be on housing benefit. I am toxic.
“I will never work with children again. I will never put myself in that position of vulnerability.”
The most troubling aspect of the whole case and perhaps the legal service as a whole, is that both the former Metropolitan Police deputy assistant commissioner, Sue Akers and Alison Levitt the former principal legal advisor to the director of public prosecutions ensured that this case came to trial.
With what smacks, perhaps, of ‘abuse of process’ Judge Martin Edwards spoke of the “enormous” pressure that Akers and Levitt had placed upon the police and the Crown Prosecution Service.
The Judge wrote in a report: “By the route of instructing lawyers, and selecting these individuals, the complainant’s parents subjected the police inquiry to intense scrutiny.”
In his 23-page ruling he had found that Akers could have placed pressure on officers that she knew which would have influenced the CPS decision to go to trial.
It was alleged that Akers, shockingly gave detectives an “action list” of tasks for the detectives to investigate despite no longer working for the police and is in fact only a civilian. Moreover, these detectives listened and did as they were instructed by an ‘ex-police officer.’
In another shocking twist of events, it also appears that the police had said the case was flimsy. Levitt urged the detectives to seize Harris’s computer and access his social media accounts and also demanded that detectives contact every pupil he had taught in his 16-years.
No evidence of any wrong doing was found against Harris.
The judge ruled that the CPS is to pay Harris’s £183,000 legal costs. However, the CPS offered just £140,000.
The judge wrote in a report: “In this case it is more clear that first the police and then the CPS were subject to enormous pressure by Mishcon de Reya, and particularly Alison Levitt and Sue Akers, as advocates for the complainant’s parents.”
“The involvement of Mishcon de Reya inevitably raises the issue whether pressure from that quarter has resulted in unnecessary or improper decisions on the part of the CPS.”
“It is important to bear in mind that, however distinguished the careers of Alison Levitt within the CPS or Sue Akers within the police service, neither was acting within such a role here.”
“Their obligations were no longer as ‘ministers of justice’ but as advocates for the complainant’s parents.”
Edmunds continued: “Any review of the correspondence which is before me shows the level of pressure put by them on the police and CPS and, in the background, there was a clear understanding that if the CPS did not pursue proceedings then a private prosecution would ensue.”
The chair of the Commons Justice Select Committee, Bob Neil MP said: The fact that a former senior police officer and a very experienced lawyer who used to work for the CPS were used by the pupil’s parents as advocates to advance their case sets a disturbing precedent.”
A spokesman for the CPS said: “In this case, as in every case handled by the CPS, the decision to charge was made on the basis of the evidential and public interest tests set out in the Code for Crown Prosecutors.”
“There was a defence application to stay the proceedings as an abuse of process, based on the interventions of Ms Levitt and Ms Akers, prior to the start of the trial which the judge decided in favour of the prosecution.”
“There was no defence application to dismiss the charges and no submission of no case to answer, and the case was left to the jury.”
“We respect the jury’s decision.”
Harris said: “If you have enough money, there are former senior members of the police and the CPS who you can pay to use their experience and contacts in these
organisations to improve your chances of securing a prosecution.
“What they did was perfectly legal. The system allowed them to do it.”