A court interpreter is being investigated after she was allegedly heard coaching a witness – leading to the collapse of a trial.
The Tamil translator has been accused of egging on a grievous bodily harm witness before he resumed giving evidence at Ipswich Crown Court on April 30.
She was said to have been heard from around 25 feet away by one of the three defendants talking to alleged victim Niruban Amirthalingham during a break from his testimony.
The female interpreter could now face a charge of contempt of court or perverting the course of justice.
Discharging the jury Recorder Peter Wallis said the translator was not reliable and the trial, which was in its third day, could not continue.
Recorder Wallis told the jury: “The translation received by the interpreter can not be relied upon. Therefore the evidence you have heard has been compromised.”
Discussing what would happen to the trial interpreter prosecutor Mark Roochove said: “It’s for the prosecution authorities to determine”, adding that the matter was of “grave concern.”
The court heard a police officer was taking a statement from the female interpreter.
The accused Kallyugan Nallathamby, 27, Karunanidhy Nallathamby, 33, and Thamathash Theivendram(dble corr), 38, all from Clacton, Essex, were released on bail pending a possible retrial.
They had all denied causing Mr Amirthalingham grievous bodily harm during an alleged attack in Ipswich, Suffolk, in June last year.
Crown Court trials are said to cost at least £3,000 a day.