John Lewis Brown

Years in prison:
Year of crime:
Year conviction was overturned:

John Lewis Brown was convicted of robbery. He pled guilty at trial but later said that he was not involved in the robbery. He claimed he was surprised to be arrested and that he was denied a solicitor and was told by the officers interviewing him that unless he signed a confession naming names the police would ensure that his uncle and his cousin would be told that he had grassed on them with regard to various robberies. He knew if he pleaded not guilty that would make things worse for him and those named in his statement and that the only way to distance himself was to plead guilty and hope for a lighter sentence. On appeal, evidence showed that the police officers involved in the investigation had been discredited. The Crown conceded that (1) if misconduct of officers had been known prior to Brown’s arraignment then they would have been disclosed, (2) had these matters been known at the time of the original trial the Crown would have offered no evidence, (3) had these matters emerged in the aftermath of the plea the Crown would not have opposed an application to change plea, and (4) had Brown been convicted absent disclosure of the matters there would be no argument open to support the conviction. In light of these concessions, said by the court to be “properly made” by the Crown, the conviction was quashed.

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  • Offence: Robbery / burglary
  • Jurisdiction: England & Wales
  • County: West Midlands 
  • Ethnicity: Unknown
  • Gender: M
  • Years in prison: 2
  • Offence convicted of: Robbery
  • Year of crime: Unknown
  • Year of initial conviction: 1983
  • Year conviction was overturned: 2006
  • Age when imprisoned: Unknown
  • CCRC Referral: Y
  • Tried with others: Unknown
  • Link to full case:
  • Type of fresh evidence at appeal: Evidence undermining the reliability of a confession, Evidence casting doubt on the integrity of police
  • Compensation: Unknown
  • Crown argued case at CofA: Unknown
  • Retrial: Unknown
  • Previous appeals: Unknown