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Last Updated: Tuesday, 16 October 2007, 16:11 GMT 17:11 UK
Man has rape conviction quashed
A 64-year-old man from West Sussex who served almost seven years in prison for sex crimes he did not commit has had his convictions formally quashed.

David Carrington-Jones, from Burgess Hill, had been found guilty of rape and indecent assault against two sisters.

He was released from a 10-year jail sentence in August.

At the Appeal Court on Tuesday, it was ruled fresh evidence which had emerged since his trial in 2000 showed his convictions were "demonstrably unsafe".

His case had been referred to the Court of Appeal by the Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC), an independent body which investigates possible miscarriages of justice.

Rape is a repulsive crime. It requires substantial punishment
Sir Igor Judge

Mr Carrington-Jones had asked the CCRC to review his case after it emerged that one of the girls, now 23, who was referred to as KJ, had been served with a caution for wasting police time by making a false allegation of sexual abuse against her step-father.

In June, the woman also made a complaint of rape against a former boyfriend, which she later admitted had been a false allegation.

Sir Igor Judge, sitting with Mr Justice Pitchford and Sir Richard Curtis at the court in London, said her sister, LJ, had denied lying about any of the allegations about Mr Carrington-Jones.

Sir Igor added: "It is also clear... that she only made the allegations she made after she was aware of the allegations made by KJ."

He ruled: "In our judgment the evidence that we now have would have had a direct impact, not only on the jury's judgment of the allegations made by KJ, but also those made by LJ."

'Dreadful consequences'

Quashing the convictions, Sir Igor, described it as a "profoundly troublesome case".

"Rape is a repulsive crime. It requires substantial punishment," he said.

"No one doubts that the victims of rape should be treated with every possible consideration by the criminal justice system."

He said a false allegation could not only have "dreadful consequences for the innocent man", but it had "an insidious effect on confidence in the truth of genuine complaints of rape".

Speaking after the ruling, Mr Carrington-Jones, who had always denied the offences, said he was very relieved that his ordeal was now over.

"But my heart goes out to other men and women who have been put inside because of false allegations they just can't challenge."

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