Year conviction was overturned:
Jerry Hosi was one of a group of former sub-postmasters and post-mistresses who were convicted of offences including theft, false accounting, and fraud, based on information from a computer system called Horizon which suggested that money had gone missing from post-office branch accounts. The basis of each of the prosecutions in these cases was that money missing from the branch account had been a result of theft by the sub-postmaster or mistress, or had been covered up by fraud or false accounting by the sub-postmaster or mistress.
In Mr Hosi’s case, an audit at his post office branch found a shortfall of £72,107.78, and Mr Hosi was investigated on that basis from May 2005.
Mr Hosi had known that he had issues with the Horizon system even prior to being investigated. He had experienced discrepancies at the branch since becoming a sub-postmaster. He has said that he had always been careful about money and had worked hard to make a success of his business, and he could not understand how the losses were occurring. As Mr Hosi did not have sufficient cash to cover the apparent losses, he inflated the figures for cash in hand. He blamed the losses on the Horizon system and denied ever stealing any money.
Before being investigated Mr Hosi had got in contact with Post Office Limited to report his “major problems balancing” and that he required “urgent face to face help”. Mr Hosi made numerous calls to Post Office Limited’s National Business Support Centre, to try and solve the balancing issues. Despite this, he was investigated and prosecuted by the Post Office in relation to the losses. He was convicted of three counts of theft and one count of false accounting in the Crown Court at Snaresbrook on 12th November 2010 following a trial.
Mr Hosi’s conviction was overturned when it became clear that evidence from the Horizon system was unreliable. On appeal, the Appeals Court stated that:
“In the interviews it is clear that the Post Office proceeded with a pre-determined view that Mr Hosi had stolen the allegedly missing money. Other possibilities have been ignored.”
Post Office Limited accepted that the prosecution of Mr Hosi was unfair and an affront to justice and his convictions were quashed on all counts.
- Offence: False accounting Theft / fraud
- Jurisdiction: England & Wales
- County: Greater London
- Ethnicity: Black
- Gender: M
- Offence convicted of: One count of theft and three counts of false accounting
- Year of initial conviction: 2010
- Year conviction was overturned: 2021
- CCRC Referral: Yes
- Post Office Case: Y
- Link to full case: https://www.casemine.com/judgement/uk/615fd8362c94e0256f3759e0
- Retrial: No