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Last Updated: Tuesday, 26 September 2006, 14:06 GMT 15:06 UK
Judge a 'fool' to have affair
Roselane Driza
Ms Driza denies blackmailing the judges over explicit videos
An immigration judge said he was a fool to embark on an affair with his Brazilian cleaner who allegedly tried to blackmail him, a court has heard.

Judge I, whose identity is being withheld, had become "a complete and total puppy to her", prosecutor David Markham told the Old Bailey.

Roselane Driza, 37, denies stealing videos and threatening two judges for employing her illegally.

She has admitted asking the other judge - Judge J - for 20,000 compensation.

The court has heard details of an "emotional triangle" involving the two judges, who had been lovers, and Ms Driza. The two judges had remained friends when their relationship ended.

After Ms Driza was sacked as a cleaner for Judge J, she started an affair with Judge I and moved into his house.

Each of them, you may think, got themselves into the very uncomfortable situations with the defendant
Prosecutor David Markham
She later discovered an intimate video of the two judges together, and Judge J allegedly snorting cocaine, and another video showing Judge I with another woman.

"It needs little emphasis that blackmail develops and thrives where there is human vulnerability and weakness, It does not flourish among angels and saints," Mr Markham told jurors.

"It takes root where flesh and blood people - including judges - decidedly fall from grace and err.

"This allegation is not an appeal for sympathy for J and I. Each of them, you may think, got themselves into the very uncomfortable situations with the defendant."

Mr Markham told jurors in his summing up that Judge J had not made strict enough checks when employing Ms Driza as her cleaner. "She became vulnerable in the process," he said.

'Wanted justice'

And Judge I "with a passion that a man many years younger might have been proud of, became, in his words, a complete and total puppy of the defendant".

Mr Markham said Judge J had become involved out of concern over her former lover's new relationship.

Ms Driza's counsel, Frances Oldham QC, in her final speech, asked for her client not to be made a scapegoat.

"She did not want money, but what she perceived to be justice," she said.

The trial continues.


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