Have-a-go Abergavenny man ‘should never have gone on trial’ - MP

6:02pm Thursday 23rd January 2014

A TORY MP says that Andrew Woodhouse case should never have gone to trial.

Monmouth MP David Davies said a “great British jury has delivered justice” and says it shows the law on self-defence hasn’t been written up properly.

But the Crown Prosecution Service has defended its decision to charge Mr Woodhouse, saying it had been satisfied the case was in the public interest.

Gwent Police said it was a difficult investigation.

Mr Woodhouse was found not guilty of causing grievous bodily harm by a jury at Cardiff Crown Court on Wednesday.

He had chased Kevin Green, 53, on March 26 last year after Mr Green stole diesel from Mr Woodhouse’s Abergavenny Tyres business, and left him with two broken legs and a broken forearm.

Mr Davies said he was delighted with the verdict, calling it common sense.

He said: “This was justice and the right decision.

“Mr Woodhouse was defending his property and business from people that had no right to be there.

“I don’t think it should have been brought to trial. I think the police were probably put into a position where they were told that they didn’t have much choice. I was very surprised that the CPS brought it forward.”

He said the whole thing had been a waste of court time.

“It does suggest to me that the law hasn’t been written up properly in favour of householders and people that want to protect their businesses.

“In this instance it hasn’t been written strongly enough to protect an innocent business owner.”

A CPS spokesman said: “Andrew Woodhouse was charged with grievous bodily harm with intent after careful consideration of all the available evidence. Our decision to charge Mr Woodhouse was taken in accordance with the Code for Crown Prosecutors, which requires us to be satisfied that that there is sufficient evidence to provide a realistic prospect of conviction and that it is in the public interest to bring charges.

“In light of the evidence, including the injuries suffered by one of the intruders, it was the prosecution case that Mr Woodhouse’s actions during the incident went beyond what the law allows for in terms of self-defence. We therefore decided that it was appropriate to bring the matter to court so that a jury could determine the issue.

“Ultimately, all evidence relating to criminal cases is tested during the trial process, with the jury being the final arbiters of guilt or innocence. We respect the jury’s decision on this matter.”

A Gwent Police spokesman said: “This was a difficult investigation which following CPS advice resulted in three men being charged with various offences. We accept the decision of the court.”

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