A miscarriage of justice

On 28th October 2011, at Bristol Crown Court, Dr. Vincent Tabak was found guilty of murdering landscape architect Joanna Yeates on 17th December 2010 and sentenced to life in prison, with a minimum tariff of 20 years. The evidence proving that he was made the scapegoat in a cruel and deliberate miscarriage of justice to protect the real killer is summarized point-by-point in “Guilty until proven Innocent”. The British and international news media and even the Leveson Inquiry have been muzzled to prevent them from exposing this evil scandal.

The Crown Prosecution Service

“In fairness to the defendant, I should point out he is a man of good character in this country and, as I understand it, in Holland.”

- Ann Reddrop, Head of the CPS-SWs Complex Casework Unit, 26th January 2011

Ann Reddrop, Head of the Complex
Casework Unit at South Western CPS.
Her preoccupation with vice suggests that the
prosecution of Vincent Tabak was a front to
prevent the exposure of a vice ring.
If there was one person who master-minded the plan to scapegoat Vincent Tabak, it was Ann Reddrop, Head of the Complex Casework Unit in the South-Western region of the Crown Prosecution Service. She used Joanna’s parents, best friend and landlord as if they were pawns in a political campaign, and she was the spin-doctor. Her strategy was to keep one step ahead of the defendant’s lawyers by tricking them so as to discredit them, and at the same time ensure that the prisoner would be held on remand, where he could be deceived and manipulated. The day before Vincent Tabak was charged with murder, The Times made Ann Reddrop its “Lawyer of the week” in the wake of her successful prosecution of the Plymouth paedophiles of “Little Ted’s Nursery”. Her intense cross-examination of the ringleader had failed, nevertheless, to elicit the identities of the abused children whose pornographic photographs had been at the centre of that case.

44 Canynge Rd, the house where they lived, and where
Joanna was allegedly murdered.
Signs of strategic planning that emerged within days of Joanna’s disappearance suggest that Ann Reddrop may have become involved at a very early stage of “Operation Braid”. “Late in December 2010, the police asked for assistance and guidance from the Crown Prosecution Service”, she told the press after Vincent Tabak's trial. “That assistance has come from the South West Complex Casework Unit based here in Bristol. I reviewed the evidence, advised that Vincent Tabak should be charged with Joanna's murder and began preparing the case for trial.”

With this statement, she incriminated herself. The regional Unit that she led was one of many all over the UK, set up to prosecute criminal cases with multiple defendants and multiple victims. So Anne Reddrop would not even have been consulted unless it had already become clear that there had been other murder victims besides Joanna Yeates (e.g., Melanie Hall), and that more than one person was involved in the killings (perhaps even Christopher Jefferies).

On 21st December 2010, the police released a very moving video appeal from the missing architect’s parents and boyfriend. The same evening, her landlord telephoned the police to report having seen Joanna outside the house where they lived, together with two other people. The next day a detective took his 2nd witness statement as a result of this phone-call. A video interview with Joanna’s boyfriend was quickly pulled from the internet. This suggests that what Christopher Jefferies told the police he had seen contradicted something that Greg Reardon or someone else had said during the public appeal. A new appeal featuring only Joanna’s parents was released the next day, implying that police were now unsure about her boyfriend. Instead of appealing for the persons seen by the landlord to come forward, a detective from the Melanie Hall murder investigation, DCI Gareth Bevan appealed on TV for the whereabouts of the pizza Joanna had bought.

“As her disappearance was so out of character, the police were already concerned for her safety,” wrote journalist Tina Orr Monro in an article about Joanna Yeates in the February 2012 issue of Police magazine, “and several items, including the bedding from the couple’s first floor flat, were sent to a forensic laboratory for analysis, although nothing of significance was discovered.”

While she was at 44 Canynge Road, Mrs. Yeates found a recipe for mince pies tucked into Joanna’s diary. The missing girl had been planning to bake during the weekend. The diary probably also held clues to her other plans for the weekend, and possibly to the identities of the persons seen by her landlord.

There is a lot of evidence that
Joanna Yeates was killed for
personal reasons, but great efforts
were made to persuade the public
that it was a random killing.
Although nothing of this was revealed explicitly to the public nor her parents, it may be conjectured that further questioning of the boyfriend quickly elicited that Joanna was dead and that her body had been dumped on the Saturday or the Sunday in a concealed spot close to Longwood Lane in Failand. Senior officers must have found themselves in the frustrating position of knowing who had killed Joanna without being allowed to charge him. Evidently leaving the murder unsolved was not an option, so they were confronted with the need to stage the recovery of her body, ensure that her boyfriend appeared to have an alibi, and identify a vulnerable scapegoat who was without an alibi. It is not obvious whether Ann Reddrop’s role was a result of some direct, personal connection to Greg Reardon himself, or of some moral injury incurred in society’s witch-hunt against child abuse.

Local residents in Failand were sceptical about Joanna’s
body lying unnoticed for seven days beside a country lane
The ingenuity of the solution to the problem posed by the body bears the hallmark of someone who was accustomed to complex cases. Heavy snow had fallen in the night of Friday 17th/Saturday 18th December 2010, but a thaw was forecast within a day or two. The public would be told that Joanna’s body had been covered by the snow shortly after being dumped by the side of the road on the Friday evening. The snow, it would be explained, prevented passers-by from noticing her until it melted, when a specially chosen dog-walker would be briefed to discover it and Longwood Lane would quickly be closed off to the public. Police already knew from his witness statement that Joanna’s neighbour Vincent Tabak had no alibi for the Friday evening, but other candidates may have been identified as well.

The public and the jury were told that Joanna’s body was 
discovered on the grass verge here in front of this stone
wall. They were not told about the four pumping engines
nor the crane that were necessary for its recovery.
All of this plan must have been laid very swiftly by Christmas eve 2010 at the latest, as the discovery of Joanna’s body was announced early on Christmas day. A separate, ruthless plan to discredit and neutralise the landlord as a potentially troublesome witness was also laid, but this had to wait until a convincing pretext for his arrest had been contrived. The evidence that the CPS had a significant part in formulating these plans is:
  • DCI Phil Jones did not just omit any mention of the many bruises found on Joanna’s body in his first press conference, but he also lied by telling the public that she had no other injuries than those that led to her death.
  • The public was not told that detectives from Bristol had flown to Holland while the landlord was being questioned in custody, even though the news media would have interpreted such news as a much-needed positive sign in the police’s favour.
  • At the time of Vincent Tabak’s arrest, the public was encouraged to believe that this was the result of an anonymous tip-off from a “sobbing girl”, who was never mentioned during the trual, but was widely believed at the time to be his girlfriend.
In an interview included in a TV documentary made after the trial, however, Ann Reddropp revealed how arresting Vincent Tabak had been part of her plan: “The police, having had his DNA sample obtained voluntarily in Holland, and checked against findings on Jo’s body, discovered that his DNA was on her body, and that was one of the key factors that led to the planned arrest of him.”

These deceptions enabled the CPS to keep one step ahead of Vincent Tabak’s first team of lawyers, who would request a bail hearing before learning for the first time that the allegations of attempting to incriminate the landlord at when he was interviewed by DC Karen Thomas at Schiphol and of beating Joanna up before killing her would be added to the grounds for opposing bail.

It was not until the trial of Vincent Tabak that the public learnt that two detectives had flown to Holland on 31st December 2010 to interview him. Testifying briefly, DC Karen Thomas told the court that he and his girlfriend had volunteered information as witnesses, and that she had begun to suspect him during their meeting at Schiphol. The Detective Constable said nothing about whether she had cautioned him, however, nor whether Mutual Legal Assistance had been requested from the Netherlands. As the court also heard that the interview had lasted 6 hours – the maximum time for holding a suspect without charge in Dutch law – it can be deduced that Ann Reddrop, in her capacity as Head of Complex Casework, had sent a Letter of Request to interview him as a suspect.
Who was this mystery woman captured on video by ITN
leaving Longwood Lane on Christmas day 2010?
Was she from the Crown Prosecution Service?

On 17th January 2011, Sun journalists John Coles (who was based in Bristol) and Alex Peake reported that the police were going to interview the two IKEA drivers who had made a delivery to Joanna’s flat on 9th November 2010. The two men, who had already spoken to detectives by then, had been so amazed and angry when they were approached by The Sun that they contacted senior officers to ask how the journalists had got hold of their names, addresses and phone numbers. All the detectives would say, however, was that they may have been eavesdropped. Asked for her explanation, Ann Reddrop gushed: “At the time when forensic tests were underway and we were awaiting outcome, we agreed that we were going to not use mobiles phones, only use secure emails – and only talked about case to a very small group of people – did not want any further leaks or difficulties.”

The contents of Joanna Yeates’s digestive system were submitted to Dr. Jennifer Miller, of Northlight Heritage, Glasgow, for analysis. It was probably a forensic pathologist, Dr. Hugh White, who removed these objects from the body, on 17th January 2011 (three days before the arrest of Vincent Tabak), in the presence of the Home Office Pathologist Dr. Russell Delaney. Two days later, the public was told that Joanna hadn’t eaten the pizza. Were these grisly objects removed so as to keep one step ahead of the independent pathologist who would be appointed by the lawyers initially engaged to represent Vincent Tabak, Dr. Nat Cary, preventing him from making any attempt to determine the time of death from the partially digested food?

Under-cover prison officer Peter Brotherton
masqueraded as a chaplain to trick Vincent Tabak,
and constructed a fake confession in the witness box
According to his own testimony at Vincent Tabak’s trial, Peter Brotherton (adherent of the Salvation Army) joined the chaplaincy in Long Lartin Prison in Worcestershire in January 2011. Early in February, the prisoner requested a counselling meeting with the chaplain, probably for advice about replacing his lawyers after they had twice failed to make a bail application for him. It may be conjectured that Peter Brotherton had been briefed by the CPS to suggest Kelcey & Hall as successors to Crossman & Co. Elements of the conversations that the prisoner requested with this deceitful chaplain would subsequently be taken out of context and used by Counsel for the Defence in his cross-examination of Brotherton to manipulate the jury and the public into believing that the Dutchman had admitted soon after his arrival at the prison to having killed Joanna YeatesAvon & Somerset Constabulary alone would not have been able to install the chaplain in the prison. How could this have been achieved unless the Home Office (who runs the prisons) had been party to the plan as well? The fake confession to the chaplain would not be possible unless the prisoner’s bail application had been unsuccessful, so it is probable that Ann Reddrop was keeping one step ahead by setting up a prison chaplain willing to compromise himself.

The case had only one murder victim, namely Joanna, whose body was found within a week of her death, and only one person would be charged with killing her and convicted. Why then did the CPS designate the prosecution of Vincent Tabak as a “complex case”? It can only be because Ann Reddrop had to weave a complex, dynamic web of deception to entrap her highly intelligent scapegoat, because her Complex Casework Unit was asked to assist the police after Joanna had gone missing and it was clear that other persons, with other victims were implicated, but who could not be publicly prosecuted.

The evidence before the Public Prosecutor

The case against Vincent Tabak that Ann Reddrop  had before her on 23rd January 2011 comprised the following evidence allegedly linking him to the crime:
  • CCTV showing a light-coloured car that could have been the Renault Megane used by the defendant driving across Clifton Suspension Bridge about the time when police claimed the body had been dumped
  • Minute traces on the clothes found on Joanna’s body of an unidentified fluid whose DNA profile, after three weeks’ “enhancement”, resembled the defendant’s
  • Eleven wool fibres found on her clothes which forensic scientists who analysed it alleged could have come from the black winter coat that the defendant could be seen wearing in videos captured on CCTV in Asda at Bedminster
  • Fibres on Joanna’s body and clothes which forensic scientists alleged could be matched to the carpet lining the floor of the boot of the Renault Megane.
  • Minute traces of body fluids (including blood) found in the luggage compartment of the Renault Megane, from which DNA profiles had been obtained, all of them matching the DNA profiles of persons who had been identified, of whom one was Joanna
  • Audit trails from the computers known to have been used by the defendant, revealing frequent viewing of web pages reporting the progress of “Operation Braid” and indicating that the defendant realised that he might be a suspect
  • The presence of Joanna’s outdoor clothes and rucksack in her flat, which the police always insisted showed that she was attacked and killed there, evading the alternative possibilities that these objects were planted there by her killer to divert suspicion away from her boyfriend, or that she was abducted before she had time to finish dressing and was killed elsewhere
  • Vincent Tabak’s statements to the police confirmed that he was alone in his flat with no alibi for the entire evening when the police claimed that Joanna had been strangled and her body dumped.
No forensic evidence from Joanna Yeates’s flat
was ever heard in court. If evidence was found,
then it must have shown that someone other than
Vincent Tabak killed her, or that she wasn't killed here at all
In view of the weakness of this evidence, and of the enormous, prolonged forensic effort that had already been expended to try to detect blood spatter and DNA in the two ground-floor flats, it may be conjectured that the following “sacrificial” evidence was also claimed by police but subsequently withdrawn before the trial so that it would never be subject to scrutiny:
  • Microscopic traces of body fluids whose DNA profile matched the defendant’s found in Joanna’s flat
  • Microscopic traces of blood whose DNA profile matched Joanna’s found in the defendant’s flat
  • Microscopic traces of blood whose DNA profile matched Joanna’s found on the defendant’s glasses
There are also indications of the following explanation for the defendant’s actions that the CPS may have contrived for the police to support the accusation of murder. On 10th/11th January 2011 The Mirror had carried a report attributed to unidentified detectives who speculated that Joanna’s killer had made a pass at her in her flat and killed her in a panic after she rejected him. This bizarre scenario survived to form the basis of Vincent Tabak’s defence statement nine months later, clearly demonstrating collusion between the prosecution and the defence. Here again, Ann Reddrop was one step ahead of Vincent Tabak. The police’s case would also have included the following allegations aired in the news media during the interrogation:
  • The defendant transported the body in a large bag or holdall to minimise blood trails (The Daily Mail, 22nd January 2011)
  • Vincent Tabak and his girlfriend had split up (Peter Dominiczak, writing in the London Evening Standard, 21st January 2011; The Mail, 22nd January 2011)
  • Vincent Tabak and Joanna Yeates knew each other professionally (The Sun, 21st January 2011)
Only the first of these three allegations was repeated during the trial.

Up before the Magistrates’ bench

Bristol Magistrates’ Court, where Ann Reddrop and
the people who could squeeze in first came face-to-face
with the man she had decided would pay the price for
the death of Joanna Yeates
Ann Reddrop made her first public appearance in the case on 24th January 2011 when Vincent Tabak was brought before the Magistrate William Summers. “You are charged with the murder of Joanna Yeates between 16th and 26th December 2010”, she told the defendant.

Like everyone else in England, the Magistrate knew very well that Joanna Yeates’s body had been dumped out in the country, so he did not question the charge of murder. Ann Reddrop presented just sufficient evidence for William Summers to rubber-stamp the case against the defendant. She said nothing about the defendant’s good character, his Ph.D, nor his fluency in English as well as German. On the contrary, she arranged for an interpreter to be sworn in, to reinforce the scruffy, unshaven impression of an inarticulate, uncouth foreigner who could barely see what was going on through the cheap glasses issued to him by the police. Apart from answering to his name and date of birth, he said nothing else during the brief hearing except to confirm that he understood what was happening. The highly intelligent man in the dock, who, just two years before, in fluent English, had successfully defended his own doctoral thesis in public, did not say a single word to defend himself against the charge of murder.

The landlord
Christopher Jefferies,
whose arrest was used to
entrap Vincent Tabak and
his girlfriend
Ann Reddrop was the only person in court who knew about the bruises on Joanna’s body, which her Counsel would eventually use in court as evidence for the killer’s intent to cause grievous bodily harm – and she was not going to mention them. Neither the Magistrate nor the defence barrister, Paul Cook, knew about the bruises. She was keeping one step ahead of them. Nor was Ann Reddrop going to reveal her plan to accuse Vincent Tabak of attempting to incriminate his landlord just yet. Addressing the magistrates’ bench, the head of the CPS’s Complex Casework Unit said: “My application is for you to send this case to Crown Court, and the timetable so far sets out a preliminary hearing next Monday, which is 31st January 2011. There is a slot available tomorrow, should the defendant wish to apply for bail, as you now appreciate you are not able to deal with that matter. So my application today is to remand this defendant in custody, and for him next to appear next Monday, if not sooner.”

Paul Cook, the first barrister
instructed by Crossman & Co to
defend Vincent Tabak, was made
to appear foolish by the CPS when
he changed his mind about bail 
Paul Cook confirmed that Vincent Tabak wished to apply for bail, and said his client would be present for that application the following day. So he took no steps to have the defendant’s allegations of corruption by LGC Forensics investigated by the Magistrate. Nor did he attempt to counter the lies in the news media about the possibility that the victim might have been sexually assaulted, his client’s alleged relationship to Joanna Yeates, his actual relationship to Ms Morson, or the suggestion that it was she who had tipped off the police. He said nothing about the defendant’s good character, his Ph.D, nor his fluency in English as well as German. All that could wait until the bail hearing, he decided.

William Summers decided against publicly scrutinising the case against the defendant and publicly asking him how he pleaded. That is the most basic function of a Magistrate, but he too decided that it could wait until the bail hearing. He told the defendant to stand up again, and said: “This matter has to go to the Crown Court, and you will appear in the Crown Court tomorrow, where a bail application can be put. He read out to the court the timetable that Ann Reddrop had given him. There will be a preliminary hearing on 31st January 2011, and there will be a plea and case management hearing on 29th April 2011.” He added that the case papers had to be served on the defence by 15th March 2010 at the latest, disregarding his lack of authority to set a timetable for a higher court.

Ann Reddrop, however, was determined to prevent the public from learning that the defendant, on being arrested, had questioned the validity of the DNA evidence, denied knowing the victim, and refused to answer most of the police’s questions. This was not reported until his “show” trial, when it could then be used to discredit him because of his faked confession, his faked plea, and the change of defence team that took place after he was sent to Long Lartin. There is no sign that the CPS ever investigated the allegations made by Vincent Tabak after his arrest that the DNA evidence was unsound and had been leaked to the press for financial gain, even though there is little doubt that the allegations were well founded.

She opposes bail

Between Vincent Tabak’s appearance before the Magistrate’s bench on 24th January 2011, when his barrister Paul Cook stated that his client wished to apply for bail the following day, and the bail hearing at Bristol Crown Court before Mr. Justice Colman Treacy on 25th January 2011, Ann Reddrop evidently extended the case against the accused. This had the result that Mr. Cook could not make the bail application that he had prepared – and he did not have time to revise it to accommodate the CPS’s additions. This débâcle had the effect of discrediting the barrister and his chambers in the eyes of the public and the defendant, just as the astute Public Prosecutor knew it would. When Vincent Tabak eventually sacked his defence team, she and the Chief Constable already had lined up a new, eminent duo who, unknown to the defendant, had been groomed to help carry out her well-laid plan. The Public Prosecutor kept one step ahead of the hapless Dutchman all the time.

What were the additions that Ann Reddrop made overnight to the charge against Vincent Tabak? From the facts that have been made public, these can be conjectured to have been:
  • “Interfering with the course of justice” by attempting to incriminate the landlord
  • The 43 injuries on Joanna’s body, indicating intent to cause grievous bodily harm
These additions in themselves would have made it difficult for any judge to justify granting bail to the killer of Joanna Yeates – assuming, of course, that it actually was the defendant who was the killer. Vincent Tabak’s lawyers would have learnt about the 43 injuries in any case when the independent pathologist they had appointed, Dr. Nat Cary, came to examine the body next day.

Another result of Ann Reddrop’s sudden additions to the charge was that Paul Cook failed to challenge the Prosecutor as he had planned about the plastic glasses, the absence of a motiove on the part of his client, the prejudicial leaks to the news media, and his client’s objections to the soundness of the DNA evidence that had formed the basis for his arrest.

Judge Colman Treacy
Ann Reddrop had to oppose bail if she were to ensure that Vincent Tabak fell into the prison chaplain trap at Long Lartin. He had to be kept behind bars, and his defence team had to be replaced by lawyers who did not know him by sight, if her plan to contrive a guilty plea was to work. She asked Mr Justice Treacy to keep Tabak in custody. But she added: “In fairness to the defendant, I should point out he is a man of good character in this country and, as I understand it, in Holland.” She could just as well have been referring to a migrant farm-worker. There was something biblical about Ms Reddrop’s charging a scrupulous and brilliant young engineer from another country with the murder of a victim whose body had been found on Christmas day.

Ann Reddrop’s admission of Vincent Tabak’s good character meant only that he had no previous convictions nor had never faced any criminal charges. Did the CPS and A & S Constabulary collaborate to devise a trick to prevent the jury from being influenced by the defendant’s irreproachably good character? Not unexpectedly, they noted that he had travelled to the north of England and USA for his firm Buro Happold, involving overnight stays. During the long lonely nights away from his girlfriend, the police would allege that he had sometimes viewed adult pornographic videos on his computer and paid out of his own money for telephone contacts to sex workers. The prosecution would try to represent this to the judge at the plea hearing and at the trial as evidence of “bad character”. The judge and the counsel for the defence disagreed.

There is considerable evidence to support the contention that Ann Reddrop arranged for an actor to enter the plea without the knowledge nor consent of the defendant. In this case, Vincent Tabak would not have heard the so-called “evidence” of his “bad character” being discussed and so was also kept in ignorance of her fabrications about the adult porn and the call-girls, and so had no opportunity to pre-empt it. She kept one step ahead of him yet again. The news media were forbidden to report this unsubstantiated evidence until after the trial. Was the “evidence” of “bad character” invented primarily to enable Ann Reddrop to reach a “gentlemen’s agreement” with the defence to refrain from presenting any independent evidence of the defendant’s genuinely “good character” at the trial? Astonishingly, no such evidence was heard except from the defendant himself.

Why did Ann Reddrop of the CPS go for murder instead of manslaughter? She maintained the charge of murder right from the time when Vincent Tabak was first charged, through to the hearing at which a person seen on a video-screen and claiming to be Vincent Tabak was heard to plead guilty of manslaughter four months later, and at the trial nine months after his arrest. The killer’s attempt to conceal Joanna’s body by dumping it (“failure to surrender” in Ann Reddrop’s words) strongly suggested intent and a certain deliberation. Had she been killed inadvertantly, he would probably have acted like Daniel Lancaster and left the body where it lay. Ann Reddrop would also have the report of the Home Office pathologist describing the evidence of Joanna’s 43 bruises and abrasions (withheld from the public until the trial) that she had been beaten up and indicating that she had been the victim of a frenzied attack.

No one in Court Two at the Old
Bailey knew the person on the
video screen who entered the plea
The benefit of a murder conviction for those law officers implicated in rigging a prosecution is that they will be retired by the time their scapegoat has served his long sentence and is allowed to spill the beans publicly. The careful but highly manipulative testimony of the false prison chaplain Peter Brotherton shows that Vincent Tabak had already been advised by one of his lawyers to consider pleading guilty to manslaughter less than 19 days after his arrest. The overwhelming evidence that the guilty-of-manslaughter video-link plea in Court Two (which is normally used for terrorist trials) at the Old Bailey on 5th May 2011 was entered by a stand-in shows that the Ann Reddrop knew very well that the defendant himself would have pleaded not guilty if he had done so in person.

Murder is a very serious crime. Joanna had also been subjected to violence. Had the defendant been a criminal with a history of gratuitous violence, then the motive would not have been of much importance in the question of bail. Even an unemployed labourer of unblemished character, however, has a human right to expect the CPS to scrutinise closely the motive alleged by the police and the possible effects of bail on their further investigations. A law officer is obliged to treat an accused as a person endowed with reason and conscience (UN-UDHR, Art. 6 & Art. 1) In the interests of transparency, furthermore, the CPS has an obligation to demonstrate publicly the circumstances that explain why an accused who has invested heavily in his own trustworthiness (i.e., his honour and reputation) by not committing any offences has suddenly now become a serious criminal who is a danger to the public. Society has a right to know and an obligation to check whether the reason why even a subsistenceless person whom the law is supposed to presume innocent has to spend nine months in harsh custody is because the police, the CPS and the judge are in collusion.

Paul Vermeij was completely lost for words
The unannounced transfer of Vincent Tabak’s plea hearing to the Old Bailey so that an unknown actor could be hired to enter the manslaughter guilty plea that Ann Reddrop wanted bears the hallmark of her mindset. Only the head and shoulders of the man claiming to be the defendant could be seen over the video link, together with a sign on the wall being him that read “Long Lartin”. The date of the hearing was also changed to 5th May 2011 without any notice to members of the general public in Bristol who wanted to attend. None of the lawyers nor journalists in court had met the real defendant before, so they wrongly perceived the person they expected to see. The Tabak family’s spokesman Paul Vermeij was almost completely lost for words when the plea was reported to him. Once again, Ann Reddrop showed herself to be one step ahead of the hapless Dutch engineer in his prison cell.

Buro Happold’s headquarters in Bath
The CPS knew perfectly well that Vincent Tabak had no conceivable motive to killed Joanna Yeates, and commonsense must have told them that he had the strongest possible motive not to kill anyone at all after all the years he had spent investing in his education. If the staff at the CPS really had believed that the gentle giant from Buro Happold, who was manifestly endowed with reason and a conscience, did kill her, then they would have realized that Joanna’s death would have had to be an accident. But (just like the scapegoating of Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito) their case against him was built up out of nothing at all – it focused solely on alibi, dubious DNA and the prosecutor’s sexual fantasy, totally disregarding the defendant’s excellent prior character and absence of motive. Ann Reddrop violated Vincent Tabak’s human rights by failing to demonstrate the benefit she supposed he expected to obtain by killing Joanna or the penalty he expected to incur by letting her live.

Did the CPS threaten to
prosecute Vincent Tabak’s
girlfriend Tanja Morson?
To get Vincent Tabak to sign his appalling and bizarre “enhanced” statement, as he reluctantly did on 22nd September 2011, Ann Reddrop must have got his lawyers to threaten him with a stick and offer him a carrot. The stick probably consisted of a serious threat of the prosecution of his girlfriend for her part in the alleged attempt to incriminate their landlord and her alleged attempt to interfere with the course of justice as the “sobbing girl”. Not only could she face a year or more in prison herself, but she could be publicly humiliated at his own trial. He was honour bound to sign. On the other hand, Vincent Tabak was probably also offered the carrot of a sentence as ludicrously lenient as that just handed down (apparently deliberately) to the Colne strangler Daniel Lancaster. Vincent Tabak evidently felt honour bound to sacrifice himself for his girlfriend, and gamble that the jury would have the commonsense to see through the gaping holes in the case against him.

Ann Reddrop outside Bristol Crown
Court after the verdict.
“Vincent Tabak was a cunning,
dishonest and manipulative man”
It was a gamble that did not pay off. After his conviction on 28th October 2011, Ann Reddrop, standing outside Bristol Crown Court, read out a statement which began “Vincent Tabak was a cunning, dishonest and manipulative man who knew exactly what he was doing when he killed Joanna Yeates.” Just like a politician gloating over the fall of the leader of an enemy country, she venomously continued, “He manipulated the police by virtue of his own in-depth research on the Internet to keep one step ahead of the investigation before his arrest, looking up extradition and medical details of decomposition.” – but the statement never anywhere explained why he should have killed her! Even if he did look these things up, like 50 million other people who followed the case, he was not shown to have done anything to mislead the police as a consequence of his research, so he was not manipulating anyone.

“Late in December 2010, the police asked for assistance and guidance from the Crown Prosecution Service. That assistance has come from the South West Complex Casework Unit based here in Bristol. I reviewed the evidence, advised that Vincent Tabak should be charged with Joanna’s murder and began preparing the case for trial.”

“In May 2011, Tabak admitted the manslaughter of Joanna, but that was only part of the story. The Crown’s case is, and always has been, that it was a deliberate act on his part and that is why we refused to accept his plea to manslaughter and he has faced trial for murder over the past four weeks.”

“Joanna’s family has been here in Bristol during the trial and have listened to much of the evidence. Our thoughts are with them today as Tabak begins a life sentence for killing their daughter.”

Vincent Tabak had spent five years research at a prestigious Dutch technical university, Eindhoven, into the design of a computer system for analyzing the movement of people in building. He was head-hunted to a job at the Bath headquarters of global architectural consultancy Buro Happold on the strength of his academic reputation even before his doctoral thesis was completed. Playing the humiliated loser on a public stage in Ann Reddrop’s vicious political drama was not in his plan. Is it likely that an engineer with such an advanced knowledge of computers would really leave such an incriminating trail on his computers if he really had killed Joanna? If he really is so “cunning”, how can we believe that such a highly intelligent, purposeful man would deliberately kill his next-door neighbour and then be so careless as to leave traces of his partial DNA on her body, plus traces of her DNA in his car boot, for the police to find? If he just wanted to strangle an unknown blonde, why not choose one who did not live next-door to him? In any case, the submission to the jury of both the evidence from his computers and the DNA evidence was faked.

What does this statement tell us about the CPS’s judgement of the intelligence of the general public? No one gets a Ph.D by being deceitful and manipulative, nor is there any sign that his family, friends and colleagues in Holland and Bath would recognize Vincent Tabak from this description. After he had been charged, his elder sister Cora Tabak said: “Anyone who knows him knows he could never be a killer. He is very gentle and social. There is no aggressiveness in him in any way. He is a straightforward and open person. What you see is what you get.”

What on earth did the Head of the South-West’s CCU believe it is about Bristol that could turned a man like him into a deliberate killer? The only possible conclusion is that the CPS too were aware of Vincent Tabaks innocence, but decided to rubber stamp the determination of A & S Constabulary to head-hunt him to Long Lartin prison for a very long time at Her Majesty Ann Reddrop’s pleasure.

Vincent Tabak and his girlfriend are cosmopolitan young mobile professionals each of whom had a highly specialized position at a thriving multi-national employer that provides jobs and creates wealth in south-west England. Yet the CPS evidently considers such high flyers expendable! Deliberately destroying their innocent lives with ferocious stubbornness, apparently to protect a local lad who had accidentally been a bit rough with his girlfriend, seems like an own-goal on the part of the CPS. It is not a strategy calculated to encourage other talented foreigners to settle in the UK - something of which Sir James Dyson, the owner of the company where the girlfriend worked, has been an outspoken public advocate.

Phoney character assassination was another of
the CPS’s cynical devices
The phoney character assassination of Vincent Tabak after the trial by the unsubstationated allegations that he had viewed adult pornography and contacted prostitutes was another of the CPS’s cynical devices. With the connivance of Mr. Justice Field and the news media, it successfully explained away to a gullible public an otherwise motiveless murder by the most unlikely criminal imaginable and, in so doing, camouflaged the ruthless scapegoating of cosmopolitan academics that prosecutors such as Ann Reddrop and her Perugian counterpart Giuliani Mignini evidently regard as acceptable.

Vincent Tabak was not allowed any visitors until his lawyers had given permission for Joanna’s body to be released for burial, the police mole from the Salvation Army had had three conversations with Vincent Tabak, and Patrick Cullinane had lobbied the Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in London. This malicious instruction must have originated with the CPS South West, and gone via the CPS and the Home Office to Long Lartin Prison.

Legal Guidance on “Bad Character Evidence” from the Legal Resources published on the CPS’s website:

“Bad character” in criminal proceedings means “evidence of or a disposition towards misconduct” (section 99 Criminal Justice Act 2003). Misconduct means the commission of an offence or other ‘reprehensible conduct’ (section 112 Criminal Justice Act 2003.) This definition applies to both defendants and non-defendants.

This definition is wide enough to apply to conduct arising out of a conviction, or conduct where there has been an acquittal (R v Z [2000] 2 AC 483) and a person who has been charged with another offence, and a trial is pending, the use of the evidence relating to that charge in current proceedings.

“Reprehensible conduct” should be looked at objectively taking account of whether the public would regard such conduct as reprehensible such as racism, bullying, a bad disciplinary record at work for misconduct; a parent who has had a child taken into care and of course minor pilfering from employers. Conduct that should not be regarded as reprehensible could include consensual sexual activity between adults of the same sex. The term ‘reprehensible conduct’ will avoid arguments about whether or not conduct alleged against a person amounted to an offence where this has not resulted in a charge or conviction.

Evidence of bad character expressly excludes:
  • evidence which has to do with the alleged facts of the offence with which the defendant is charged (section 98(a) Criminal Justice Act 2003); and
  • evidence of misconduct in connection with the investigation or prosecution of that offence (section 98(b) Criminal Justice Act 2003). Evidence of misconduct in connection with the investigation or prosecution of the charge such as: evidence of resisting arrest by running away to imply an acknowledgement of guilt remains admissible outside the hearsay provisions.
The key test of whether evidence is admissible where the two exceptions apply is relevance. If the evidence goes to an issue in the case and tends to prove one of the elements of the offence then it is relevant and admissible.

After the verdict

“He was cunning and dishonest towards his girlfriend with whom he maintained a normal relationship…” This forced Tanja Morson to issue her own statement of betrayal the following day: “I would like to extend my deepest sorrow and sympathy to the Yeates family for their loss. I am thankful to the judge, the jury, the barristers and solicitors for all their on-going attention and professionalism.” She knew he would get beaten up by fellow inmates and her own career prejudiced by association if she remained silent.

Image of child abuse
In its mission statement, the CPS places great emphasis on the importances it attaches to the protection of the victims of crime. Yet it has taken no steps to have the children depicted in the thirty illegal images of child abuse alleged to have been found on Vincent Tabak’s computer identified so that they may be protected from further abuse. Nor has it taken any steps to have the other persons who may have been involved in producing these images rounded up.

If any illegal images of child abuse really had been found on Vincent Tabak’s computer, then the judge would have had no hesitation in allowing the jury trying him for murder to be told about these, as irrefutable proof of the defendant’s bad character. That this never happens proves beyond doubt, not only that there never were any such images on his computer, but also that the discussions that did take place between the judge and the barristers about evidence of bad character was just a charade for the press, with no foundation in truth.

The obsession of the prosecutors with prostitution, adult pornography and illegal images of chid abuse suggests that they knew that the killing of Joanna Yeates was linked in some way to a criminal ring dealing in these vices, and that some of these people, possibly for reasons of national security, could not be brought to justice for their part in her death. Ann Reddrop ensured that an innocent Dutch engineer had to stand in for the real killer, whoever he was.