Paralegal jailed for leaking Crown Prosecution Service files to criminal gangs

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a former Crown Prosecution Service The activist has been jailed after downloading and forwarding highly sensitive files, which fell into the hands of criminal gangs.

Paralegal Rachel Simpson, 39, from newport, South Walesworked for mussel Known to have started accessing content illegally since 2003 and from 2016 to 2020.

The single mother’s “inexplicable” actions were said to have been motivated not financially but to retain the attention of an ex-boyfriend, Cardiff premier court Heard it on Friday.

The court was told that much of the information obtained by Simpson over a four-year period related to complex police operations in a high-level conspiracy to supply drugs and money laundering cases in South Wales.

Searches entered by Simpson on the CPS and Crown Court computer systems often contained the names of well-known drug dealers – some of whom she was said to be familiar with.

Documents from those systems were later found to have been downloaded by Simpson onto his laptop. She is also known to have made hard copies of some of those files, which were later passed on to third parties.

In April 2019 a bundle of printed documents was handed over anonymously by Simpson to a solicitor firm in Birmingham representing Newport gangster Jerome Nunes – who was arrested on the city’s streets with over £10 million of class A drugs Was jailed for his role in the flood. ,

The documents came to the attention of police after they were presented to the court as part of an appeal to overturn Nunes’ conviction.

Simpson’s fingerprints were discovered on the papers, along with the fingerprints of Nunes’ girlfriend and associate.

In May 2020, Simpson downloaded an eight-page document detailing a surveillance operation being carried out on a drug gang in Porth, Rhondda Sion Taff.

A photo of the document was shared a day later among criminals – one of whom was former Newport kingpin Stephen Gibbons – on EncroChat, an encrypted messaging platform.

Prosecutor David Temkin Casey said the information had caused those being surveilled to “modify their criminal tactics”.

Some of the messages sent on EncroChat included references to a “busy person in Newport” who “receives the CPS papers for us”.

The image was discovered by Terion, the regional organized crime unit for South Wales, after they were given access to EncroChat data by the National Crime Agency (NCA) after French authorities hacked the service.

This led investigators to Simpson, whom authorities arrested at his home in June 2020.

He was later indicted and admitted two counts of misconduct in public office and 29 counts of unauthorized use of computer systems.

Other information Simpson was found to have included access to applications by police to use as evidence evidence calls made to the prison phone by former drug-dealer David Perry.

Personal statements from victims written by a barrister and a detective chief inspector, which were read out to the court by Mr Temkin, detailed how Simpson’s actions affected them personally, but also the relationship between the CPS and the police and Suspicion between different police units led to undermining of trust. How the information was getting leaked.

Edward Hetherington KC, defending Simpson, told the court that his client had a “matrix of vulnerabilities” due to her diagnosis of long-term depression and possible autism and that she was susceptible to “influence and exploitation”.

Sentencing Simpson to six years in prison, High Court judge Mrs Jefford DBE said: “Your offense was not a one-off error of judgement.

“Apart from the two instances of misconduct, you accessed or attempted to access once in 2016, twice in 2017, twice in 2018, then 17 times in 2019 and eight times in 2020 before you were stopped. On some occasions you did this several times in one day.

“The evidence that you often did it when you weren’t at work, late at night or sick made it even more clear that you knew what you were doing was wrong.”

“When interviewed by police, you never offered an explanation or motivation for what you did,” the judge continued.

“The investigation has been conducted to see whether you benefited financially and there is no evidence that you did. In a sense, your actions are inexplicable.

“You said you had a relationship with a man for a few months in 2012 to 2013. About a year later, out of the blue, he asked you to see someone at work for him. You did, and when he told you So you keep doing it.

“You wanted his attention, and you would do everything he said. You didn’t recognize him.

He said: “You knew very well that what you were doing was illegal. You signed the Official Secrets Act.

“The public, the courts, and all those involved in the criminal justice system are entitled to expect the highest level of integrity from CPS.

“What you did is fundamentally undermine the public’s confidence in that integrity, and in CPS’s ability to fairly prosecute defendants.”

Detective Inspector Matt Houghton, of Tarry Police, said: “Simpson enjoyed a position of trust and responsibility within the Crown Prosecution Service, which he betrayed, letting down his colleagues, the police and the public.”