Smug­gler loses ap­peal at­tempt

Judge ‘sat­is­fied’ over orig­i­nal rul­ing

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS - By John Sham­mas john.sham­mas@trin­i­tymir­

WALK­ERS and wildlife will ben­e­fit from im­prove­ments to one of the nat­u­ral de­lights of the bor­ough.

The stretch of Yead­ing Brook is to be en­hanced thanks to a grant from the SITA Trust.

The £41,000 cheque will help London Wildlife Trust adapt the stream in the Yead­ing Brook Mead­ows be­tween A CON­VICTED drug smug­gler who claimed a judge was ‘bi­ased’ against him has lost in his fight to clear his name.

Charles Oluchukwu Akpom was jailed for eight years at Isle­worth Crown Court in June last year after he was con­victed of be­ing in­volved in drug im­por­ta­tion.

The 37-year-old was Charville Lane and Yead­ing Lane, in Hayes, by plant­ing and cre­at­ing con­di­tions for wildlife to thrive.

Ac­cess for walk­ers will also be im­proved.

Tom Hay­ward, re­serves man­ager with London Wildlife Trust, said: “This project will of­fer us an op­por­tu­nity to im­prove a heav­ily mod­i­fied river chan­nel, present at an ad­dress in New­court, Cow­ley, in Jan­uary last year when un­der­cover po­lice de­liv­ered a drug-filled par­cel that had been in­ter­cepted and opened by a de­liv­ery company, found to be con­tain­ing £300,000 worth of co­caine.

After be­ing sentenced, Akpom claimed po­lice had fab­ri­cated ev­i­dence.

His lawyers also put for­ward that the pros­e­cu­tion had failed to dis­close im­por­tant ma­te­rial in the case and not only im­prov­ing the stretch of wa­ter for wildlife but also in­creas­ing peo­ple’s ac­cess and en­joy­ment of this river en­vi­ron­ment.”

The SITA Trust makes grants through the Land­fill Com­mu­ni­ties Fund, which uses land­fill taxes for en­vi­ron­men­tal im­prove­ments. that the charge ‘du­plic­i­tous’.

How­ever, a court of ap­peal threw out the com­plaints last Fri­day.

Re­ject­ing the ap­peal, Judge Peter Rook, sit­ting with Lord Jus­tice Pitch­ford and Mr Jus­tice Dinge­mans, said: “We have read the trial judge’s rul­ings and the sum­ming up in this case.

“We are quite sat­is­fied that this ap­pli­cant re­ceived a fair trial and that there is no merit what­so­ever in any of the points raised.”


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