London

Woman jailed over plot to expose key witness in murder trial

Lydia Lauro Image copyright The Metropolitan Police
Image caption Lydia Lauro, 33, got a job at Hammersmith Police Station two months after her lover Leon de St Aubin was jailed

A police worker who seduced a detention officer to find the identity of a witness in her boyfriend's murder trial has been jailed.

Lydia Lauro, 33, got a job at Hammersmith Police Station after her boyfriend was jailed for his part in a shooting.

She used detention officer Hayden Cheremeh's log-in to gain access to secure files.

Lauro and Cheremeh, 36, were jailed for five years at the Old Bailey.

They were found guilty after a trial of conspiracy to commit misconduct in public office.

The court was told Lauro passed on details of a protected anonymous prosecution witness.

The witness had given crucial evidence from behind a screen, using a voice-altering device and under a pseudonym.

Image copyright The Metropolitan Police
Image caption Hayden Cheremeh was described as naive and infatuated

Lauro sent screenshots of a list of possible names of the witness to Diana Lank, the mother of her boyfriend's co-defendant.

Lauro's boyfriend, Leon de St Aubin, and Ms Lank's son, Rupert Ross, were each sentenced to a minimum of 30 years in jail in 2011 for the shooting outside Wandsworth Prison.

The judge said Ms Lank had persuaded Lauro to uncover secret information. Ms Lank was cleared last year.

She admitted receiving the confidential information, but said her actions were justified because her son had been wrongfully convicted.

Laurie-Anne Power, defending Lauro, said her client was misguided, vulnerable and had been influenced by Ms Lank.

The court heard that Cheremeh was obsessed with Lauro.

Jeminipe Akin-Olugbade, defending, described him as a "naive, infatuated and possibly over-idealistic person who got caught up in actions far greater than himself".

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