A man has been found not guilty of putting pressure on another man to drop sex and drug charges against him.
Mark Alexander Smith, 60, has been on trial in the Napier District Court on Monday and Tuesday before Judge Geoff Rea after pleading not guilty to perverting the course of justice.
A jury of five men and seven women retired to consider its verdict at 11.30am today and returned a not guilty verdict shortly before 3pm.
On Monday, Crown prosecutor Cam Stuart had told the jury that a 19-year-old man's complaint laid with police in late 2015 led to Smith being charged with four counts of sexual violation, two of supplying methamphetamine, two of supplying cannabis and one of stupefying.
But the charges were dropped five months later after the complainant wrote letters to police and a Crown prosecutor saying the claims were false.
Stuart had alleged Smith had pressured the complainant to drop the charges, through February and March 2016.
However, in his closing address Smith's defence lawyer Richard Stone told the jury the complainant had plenty to gain from saying the letters were a lie, as he was being charged with attempting to pervert the course of justice based on his original statement.
Stone told the jury the complainant had admitted during questioning that he would lie when his "back was against the wall" or when he wanted to "hurt someone."
Crown Prosecutor Cam Stuart had told the jury in his closing address that the only person to benefit from the original charges being withdrawn was Smith.
He alleged Smith had bribed the complainant by offering him a deal on a car, and also threatened him by saying he would bring the complainant down with him if he did not withdraw the charges.