Northampton

Adam Simmonds trial: Jury in ex-PCC hearing discharged

Adam Simmonds Image copyright PA
Image caption Adam Simmonds denied recklessly breaching the data protection act

The jury in the trial of a former police and crime commissioner (PCC) accused of breaching the data protection act has been discharged.

Adam Simmonds, 40, denied sharing details about a police probe involving Wellingborough MP Peter Bone.

The jury at Southwark Crown Court failed to reach a verdict after more than 12 hours of deliberations.

It had been a "very novel, complex and sensitive case", the judge said. A retrial will now be considered.

Mr Justice Green had said the prosecution's case was that Mr Simmonds "wrongly conflated" his role as Northamptonshire PCC with his political role and found it "difficult" to distinguish between the two.

It was alleged he disclosed information about a fraud investigation involving Wellingborough MP Peter Bone.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Peter Bone said it was a "complete surprise" that a fellow MP knew details of a police probe

The investigation into Mr Bone was dropped by the Crown Prosecution Service in 2014.

Defence barrister Mark Harries had told the court Mr Simmonds was "deeply concerned" about delays in a decision as to whether Mr Bone should be prosecuted or not.

Everything the former PCC had done was "in good faith", he added.

'Court record'

Mr Simmonds, of Northcote Road in Leicester, was the first PCC for Northamptonshire after his election in November 2012. He held the post until May 2016.

He had denied a single charge of unlawfully obtaining or disclosing personal data in the three-week trial.

The prosecution asked for seven days to consider a retrial, which was granted.

The judge said the case may be "a court record for the number of notebooks used".

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