London News & Search
The assault case against MOBO-award winning rapper Kano has dramatically collapsed after the alleged victim apparently went on a climbing holiday instead of attending the trial.
The 32-year-old Grime star, real name Kane Robinson, was accused of attacking Henry Kinman and his then-girlfriend Suzzan Atala at private member’s club Shoreditch House on December 16 last year.
Mr Kinman, who runs an art gallery in east London, claimed he was attacked by both Mr Robinson and his co-defendant, Christopher Brown, 30, and was due to be a key witness at Wood Green crown court this week.
But he emailed police in mid-August saying he could not attend the trial because of a “family emergency” and needed to join his sister in the south of France.
However, investigations by Mr Robinson’s lawyers today revealed Mr Kinman has posted several pictures of himself on social media rock climbing in the last fortnight.
On August 26, Mr Kinman published a mountain-side picture with the caption: “View from the Crown”, and followed it on September 2 with a shot of him hanging on a rope from a cliff face.
“Any concern that this was a gentleman apparently engaged in focusing on his sister’s welfare over and above other activities has by his own posts on Twitter has been eradicated,” said prosecutor Roger Smart.
He said police officers had taken Mr Kinman’s original email “in good faith” but now accepted the social media posts appeared to undermine his claims.
Mr Smart formally offered no evidence against the two defendants, who embraced family and friends as they walked free from the dock.
Mr Smart added that police and CPS will now probe Mr Kinman’s activities further.
“The scenario is in the last few days if not weeks, while Mr Kinman was dangling from a rope enjoying the scenic view in the south of France, having told the police he was the victim of a family emergency, Mr Robinson was overcome with anxiety at the prospect of a trial and devastation of his career,” said defence barrister Jeremy Dein QC.
He said the social media posts appear to show Mr Kinman had been climbing in the last couple of weeks in August, returning to the UK before flying out to Grenoble on September 1.
“This is not just lamentable, but of the gravest type of misconduct, if Mr Kinman has indeed toyed with the criminal justice process in the manner the material suggests he might have done,” added Mr Dein.
Judge Gregory Perrins formally entered not guilty pleas against Mr Robinson and Mr Brown, telling them: “Apparently Mr Kinman deliberatley failed to attend, and also appears on the face of it to have deliberately misled the prosecution.
“It is appears to be the case Mr Kinman had no intention of attending.”
He added that the two defendants walked free from court “without a stain on your character”.
The court had earlier heard Ms Atala, a jewellery designer, was also unavailable for the trial because she had moved to the US not contacted the prosecution team since March.
Robinson, who starred in hit Channel 4 show Top Boy and 2012 film Tower Block, was set to fight the assault claims, challenging Mr Kinman’s account of the alleged incident.
The singer won his first MOBO in 2005 as best newcomer and collected a second last year for his acclaimed album Made in the Manor. He has also been nominated for the Mercury Prize.
Robinson, of Buckhurst Hill, Essex, denied assault occasioning actual bodily harm, unlawful wounding, and affray.
Brown, of Hackney, east London, denied assault occasioning actual bodily harm.
London News & Search