The murder convictions of Daniel Mansell and Paul Maxwell were quashed on 30 November 2009. However Paul Maxwell pleaded guilty at subsequent retrial.
Mansell and Maxwell were convicted at Leeds Crown Court of the murder of pensioner Joe Smales in 1998, on the evidence of a supergrass. Joe Smales died as a result of the injuries he had sustained in the course of a robbery at his home.
Brothers Paul Maxwell and Daniel Mansell, from Rochdale, had their applications for leave to appeal against their convictions refused by the Court of Appeal in 1999.
They applied to the Criminal Cases Review Commission in 1998. In October 2001, the Commission required the appointment of an Investigating Officer under s19 of the Criminal Appeal Act 1995 to make inquiries to assist its review of these cases and that of another applicant, Gary Ford. West Yorkshire Police appointed a senior officer from North Yorkshire Police to conduct that investigation.
The complex and extensive investigation was conducted over a number of years and the final part of a report of more than 2,900 pages was provided to the Commission in the summer of 2007. These cases were referred principally on the basis of fresh evidence found by that investigation concerning the treatment of an important prosecution witness.
Lord Justice Hooper, sitting with Mr Justice Cooke and Mrs Justice Swift, quashed both men’s convictions on 30 November 2009 and ordered a retrial for Paul Maxwell. Daniel Mansell has been released.
Mr Mansell is represented by Mr N Leskin of Birnberg Peirce and Partners, 14 Inverness Street London NW1 7HJ