Constance Briscoe retrial after jury fails to reach verdict

Constance Briscoe, a part-time judge, faces a retrial over charges that she lied to police investigating the Chris Huhne speeding points case after the jury failed to reach a verdict.

Ms Briscoe  a 56-year-old barrister, from Clapham, south west London, is accused of providing police with two inaccurate statements about her role as an intermediary between then Energy Secretary Chris Huhne's estranged wife Vicky Pryce and reporters in revealing details of the speeding points saga.

It is claimed that Briscoe misled police in two witness statements made on 31 May 2011 and 16 August 2012.

She is also accused of producing an altered copy of a statement and then deliberately getting a document expert to view the wrong version of the statement.

Ms Briscoe denies three counts of intending to pervert the course of justice. She has been suspended since her arrest in October 2012.

The jury of six women and five men had been deliberating since Wednesday at Southwark Crown Court but were discharged after failing to reach verdicts on any counts.

The jury was reduced from 12 to 11 earlier this week after one member was discharged for personal reasons, but after 13 hours of deliberations could not reach verdicts, despite being told they could find majority verdicts of 10-1.

A date for the re-trial has not yet been fixed. Ms Briscoe was given unconditional bail.

During the trial, which started on 14 January, the jury heard that Briscoe helped economist Pryce, who was a friend and also her neighbour, to reveal information about the points-swapping scandal to newspapers after she and Huhne separated in 2010.

The scandal eventually lead to Huhne's resignation and subsequent prosecution. He pleaded guilty in February last year, while Pryce was convicted after a trial. Both have now served jail sentences.

Additional reporting by Press Association

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

Open letter to David Cameron

Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

You don't say!

Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

So what is Mubi?

Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

The hardest job in theatre?

How to follow Kevin Spacey
Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

This human tragedy has been brewing for years

EU states can't say they were not warned
Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

Women's sportswear

From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

Clinton's clothes

Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders