Pub brawl allegations thrown out by court

The Waggon and Horses in Newmarket HIgh Street

The Waggon and Horses in Newmarket HIgh Street - Credit: Google Street View

A landlord and two pub customers have been cleared of charges in connection with a disturbance earlier this year after a judge threw out the case against them.

Before Ipswich Crown Court were licensee Fraser Thompson, 53, of Edinburgh Road, Newmarket, Michael Asker, 29, of All Saints Road, Newmarket and Alexander Shinn, 28, of High Street, Newmarket.

All three defendants denied a charge of affray arising out of an incident at the town’s Waggon and Horses pub on February 29 last year.

Asker and Shinn also denied possession of an offensive weapon in a public place – namely a bottle of wine, and Thompson denied possession of a fire extinguisher as an offensive weapon.

On Wednesday, defence teams for the men successfully applied to have the case thrown out after arguing that the prosecution evidence was insufficient for any reasonable court to convict.

Granting the application, Judge Emma Peters said the prosecution case was based solely on a passage of unclear CCTV footage of a disturbance involving the three men and a group of about six other men who appeared "raucous and intoxicated" – none of whom agreed to provide statements to the police.

Judge Emma Peters said she did not consider the Crown's case was enough to make a jury sure the defendants acted unlawfully and directed the jury to return not guilty verdicts on all the charges.