Over the Hills and Faraway, Book 5. Paying the Piper
Chapter 7: A Man of the Law
Caution: This Drama Sex Story contains strong sexual content, including Ma/Fa, Ma/ft, Mult, Consensual, Drunk/Drugged, Heterosexual, Cheating, Revenge, Rough, Group Sex, Black Female, Oral Sex, Anal Sex, Tit-Fucking, Analingus, Violent,
Desc: Drama Sex Story: Chapter 7: A Man of the Law - Dewey Desmond knew the transition from military to civilian life would be a challenge, but was unprepared for the shocks, surprises ... and some successes ... encountered as he made his way through the turbulent first ten years of the new Millennium, his path strewn with tragedies, triumphs, disasters and delights ... the latter female of course. Follow him to the conclusion of Over the Hills and Faraway; the journey of a life.
On the following Wednesday afternoon I spent a considerable time wandering aimlessly around the higgledy-piggledy building of Lincoln's Inn before eventually finding my way to the chambers of the barrister, an eminent Queen's Counsel, who would be defending me in court.
Vincent Avery-Preece was a large, well-built, man with a leonine head of hair. He looked and sounded something like Richard Burton, an actor from way back in the 1960s, and I learned later he modelled himself on how Richard Burton had appeared in the film 'The V.I.Ps'. It was said Vincent Avery-Preece's wife had been turned into a replica of Elizabeth Taylor, by expensive, extensive, plastic surgery, but as I never met the woman I cannot confirm the story.
He waved me into a leather chair while he finished signing some papers handed him by a very tasty young woman. He finished, smiled at her and said, "Thank you, Samantha. You have written a most concise and succinct rebuttal, well done. Tell Charlotte I will go through her briefs thoroughly after I've dealt with Mister Desmond here." Samantha giggled, gave me a brilliant smile and left. We both watched longingly as she swayed out of the office.
"Thirty years in the legal profession, and I still get a laugh when I mention briefs," Vincent Avery-Preece... 'Please call me V-P' ... said ruefully. He sighed and continued, "I tutor two more pupil barristers, as sexy and attractive as her ... it's a tough job but someone has to do it."
He offered me a whisky, which I refused, then poured himself a generous measure and took a long swallow. "One of the perquisites of being head of chambers is taking a dram of Old Pulteney of an afternoon." He said in a voice mellowed by a lifetime of single malts. "Another is giving on the job training to attractive female pupil barristers ... on the job literally in many cases, I'm happy to say." He let out a deep chuckle, and grinned like a naughty school boy, then picked up a sheet of paper from his desk top.
"Well, Mister Desmond, I have been instructed by Charles Baker, of Butcher, Baker, and McCandless, to represent you. He has apprised me of the rudiments of the case, but to defend you in court, and hopefully obtain an acquittal, I will need to know everything pertaining to your assault on..." he peered at the sheet of paper in his hand, " Martin Hodge, which resulted in him being placed in intensive care and you being charged with causing Grievous Bodily Harm with intent." He took a sip from his glass of whisky. "What you disclose to me is as confidential as in the confessional. That a man may have committed the crime he is charged with does not necessarily lead to him being found guilty of the crime. My duty to you is to produce a defence which will procure an acquittal, or at least avoid you serving the full tariff for the crime if found guilty, but for me to execute my obligation satisfactory you must acquaint me with the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth." He gave a sardonic smile. "In fact it is only between a client and his defending barrister that the well known phrase has any real significance."
I gave V-P the full details leading up to the events of my being charged with GBH with intent. How, on my return from Afghanistan, I found Hodge and my wife shagging, and how he hit me with a bottle and knocked me unconscious. When I told V-P I later joined a gym, in order to build up my strength to be able to... , he interrupted me."I sincerely hope you are going to tell me you joined the gymnasium solely to regain your fitness after being wounded in Afghanistan?"
I shook my head. "No, I intended..."
"I strongly advise you to reconsider what you are about to divulge, Mister Desmond. The prosecution are bound to discover your attendance at the gymnasium, and will accuse you of doing so to strengthen your physique in order to attack Hodge at a later date." He took a sip of whisky. "Tell me again why you joined the gym?"
"To regain fitness, after being hospitalised in Afghanistan." I dutifully replied.
"Bravo, Mister Desmond," V-P said. "I can see you and I will enjoy an excellent working partnership." He took another sip from his glass. "Many people believe ethics to be a county to the east of London; unfortunately lawyers are supposed to know, and conform, to the correct meaning of the word, and act accordingly. If you had divulged to me you intended attacking Mister Hoddge I would be compelled to advise you to plead guilty to GBH with intent, and then direct all my efforts to obtaining you a reduced sentence."
After listening to my full disclosure V-P sat quietly for several moments, taking more sips from his glass.
"Mister Hodge sounds the sort of person who deserved being put into intensive care, but it will present quite a challenge to gain an acquittal, Mister Desmond. However, it is not beyond the realm of possibility the charge of GBH with intent is rescinded, and the lesser charge of GBH be brought against you. I will contact the Crown Prosecution Service, the CPS, and explore the likelihood of arriving at a mutually beneficial arrangement vis-à-vis Regina versus Desmond."
"Is there any chance of having the charge reduced to Actual Bodily Harm?"
V-P spluttered his mouthful of Old Pulteney in suprise at my question. "Not a hope in hell! A headbutt, and a kick in the gonads, would suffice for ABH."
He tapped the sheet of paper he held. "The number of bones broken in Mister Hodge's body by your assault nearly amounts to an attempt of murder; you're damned fortunate not to have been the charged with that offence."
He shook his head at my ignorence of the law."Believe me, Mister Desmond, if CPS do not reduce the charge, and remove 'with intent' from the charge sheet, we will have a real fight on our hands." He saw the anxious expression flitter across my face."But have no fear, I am confident CPS will take the easier option of a plea of GBH rather than fight a case which might last for days."
It was V-P's understanding the CPS had first thought my attack on Hodge was drug related. He was suspected to be a dealer, although never arrested for the offence, and was found in possession of a kilo of cocaine when being taken to hospital. CPS assumed another gang of drug dealers were moving in on Hodge's turf, and I had been hired to intimidate Hodge into handing over the territory to them. The Director of Public Prosecutions assigned one of their most ambitious prosecutors to the case, hoping to arrest a lot of dealers and drug smugglers from the fall out. It became clear this was not the case when the police failed to find any evidence to support the theory, but did discover I was divorcing my wife on account of her adultery with Hodge.
The CPS was now treating the assault as a revenge attack by a cuckolded husband, and Blackburn, the ambitious CPS man, was still on the case, hoping for a quick and easy conviction.
"Blackburn is an odious little Gray's Inn man, who has had the effrontery to come sniffing around my female pupils, trying to get into their briefs." V-P growled. "One of the perks of being a tutor is to take first crack at your pupil's cracks, and Blackburn is well out of order poaching on my territory."
He scowled, and took a large swallow of his whisky before returning to my case. "In some way the investigation into a non-existent drug related attack has helped our cause." He said. "The police spent a considerable amount of time and money hunting for links between you and drug gangs, and have come up with nothing. They will not have the inclination, or the resources, to spend more time or money looking into what is little more than a 'domestic' in their eyes. Consequently, although Blackburn knows of the adultery between Hodge and your wife, and is building his entire prosecution on the fact, he does not know of the family relationships between you, Hodge, and your wife, and I aim to keep the spud faced bastard in the dark for as long as possible."
I gathered V-P was not enamoured of Mr. Blackburn.
V-P's defence strategy was for me to plead not guilty to GBH with intent but to plead guilty to GBH. Hodge did indeed suffer grievous bodily harm, but it would be difficult for the prosecution to prove GBH with intent, which carries a maximum sentence of life. Proving intent could take days, or even weeks, of argument and counter argument by the opposing barristers, and like all government departments the CPS are given budget and productivity objectives to meet. A short trial, with a guilty verdict, would satisfy those aspirations and keep the CPS within budget and also meet their targets ... every bureaucrat's wet dream. Crown Court judges have similar aims, and would want to clear as many cases from their lists as possible. A short trial would gratify the judge conducting my trial, which might result in a more lenient sentence.
The maximum custodial sentence for GBH was five years, but V-P was confident I might only receive the minimum custodial sentence of six months, possibly even a suspended sentence, should CPS decide to charge me with the lesser charge.
It seemed strange to me the deletion of a mere two words could change a custodial sentence from life to six months, but as V-P said, 'don't confuse The Law with Justice'.
If the CPS did decide to prosecute me with causing GBH with intent a problem would arise when the jury learned of Hodge's adultery with my wife, which the prosecution would argue was the reason for my attack on him. Hodge might come across as a drug dealing, adulterous scumbag, and the jury might tacitly approve of how I dealt with him, but they would be compelled to find me guilty of GBH with intent, if Blackburn could prove I did plan to cripple Hodge.
I could be facing a long term prison sentence, but V-P's expensive price tag pointed to him being an extremely effective defence lawyer, and he was basing our defence strategy on the story already part concocted, namely I wanted to forget the whole distasteful episode of Hodge and Miriam. My petition for a divorce was entered in the Divorce Court, and I wanted nothing more than to get away from Plaistow and them. I intending moving to the Chigwell area for a new life and employment, and bumping into Hodge at The White Swan was nothing more than a ghastly coincidence. I hadn't gone to the pub to seek him out and attack him, but merely for a drink in what would become my local hostelry when my move to the area had been completed. The fact he attacked me would help corroborate my version of events. However, what I said to him before he attacked me might be construed as provocation, inviting an attack and then, me being ready for such an eventuality, beating seventeen shades of shit out of him.
V-P seemed confident of, and I pinned my hopes on, CPS accepting my guilty plea to the lesser crime of GBH, and if so there would then be no reason for the prosecution to go into details, such as what I said to Hodge before he attacked me at the trial. I left V-P's office thinking I might escape a long sojourn as Her Majesty's guest.