A convicted drug dealer who has always proclaimed his innocence will take the fight to clear his name to the Court of Appeal tomorrow.
David Reece is currently serving 19 years in jail for conspiracy to import and supply Class A drugs. Since his conviction in March 2018 Reece’s family have maintained he is a victim of a miscarriage of justice, and in October that year the legal charity Inside Justice took up the case. Inside Justice’s investigative team, made up of lawyers, former detectives and forensic specialists, concluded Reese’s conviction could be legally challenged and launched the appeal.
Police recovered 142.5kgs of heroin and cocaine with a potential street value of more than £65 million. The gang was sentenced to a total of more than 120 years in prison. Reece was found guilty by a majority verdict of 10-2, following 37 hours of jury deliberations. His original sentence of 16 years was ruled ‘unduly lenient’ and increased to 19 years after the Attorney General referred the case back to the court.
The defence team were granted Friday’s appeal in October last year, based on a complaint made about the trial judge’s Summing up.
Reece’s daughter Charlotte (right) describes the appeal as ‘our only ray of hope’ in a difficult time. ‘There’s never been any doubt in our minds that he’s innocent,’ she says. ‘It’s changed all of our lives and his most of all: he’s living in despair and we have been powerless to help. Being separated from someone that you love due to something you have no control over is the worst kind of pain.’
‘For more than a year, our experts have worked tirelessly with a team of eminent lawyers to identify reasons which we believe make this conviction unsafe,’ commented Inside Justice’s chief exec Louise Shorter. ‘We hope David will soon be reunited with his family.’