old baileys court

One of the biggest investigations ever by the SFO came to an end with the jury verdicts at Southwark Crown Court in the case of SFO v GPT, Cook, Mason & Dorothy this month.

The acquittals of Cook and Mason on the main conspiracy charge is likely to have been as a result of the jury’s view that there was governmental knowledge (and possible collusion) in the alleged corruption that was at the heart of this prosecution. The case has been watched closely by anti-corruption groups for many years since it was first investigated in the wake of the UK Bribery Act 2010. A series of Attorney Generals refused to consent to a prosecution until finally, Geoffrey Cox QC MP, agreed to as one his last acts before leaving office. The case concerned  inter-governmental arrangements for contracts to supply communications support to the Saudi Arabian National Guard over many decades. GPT pleaded guilty at an early stage and received a substantial fine.

We represented Mr Dorothy a former MoD civil servant and independent contractor who acted as a consultant to the project. Eventually after several attempts, we managed to persuade the SFO to drop the case against our client and the Solicitor General to sign a Nolle Prosequi to end the case on the basis that our elderly client’s poor physical and neurological condition, meant that it was no longer in the public interest to try him as it was highly doubtful he could effectively participate in any trial.

Mark Cotter KC of 5 St Andrew’s Hill and Ronnie Manek, in house advocate, were instructed by senior solicitor Greg Stewart who had represented Mr Dorothy since 2015.