LEGAL files relating to top court cases including the Rhys Jones murder were found in the street
A woman was stunned to discover a computer memory stick belonging to a lawyer lying on the pavement in Hope Street, Liverpool.
She said the electronic device contained extensive information about the killing of the 11-year-old in Croxteth – including names and addresses of witnesses, many of whose identities were kept anonymous to the public during the two-month trial.
Merseyside Police today insisted that there was nothing of a sensitive nature contained on the memory stick.
However the woman said she was also able to see information about:
Victims in high-profile cases, including some graphic accounts of sexual abuse cases.
People’s private bank account details and claims made by patients against various NHS trusts, including Liverpool Women’s Hospital.
Files of surveillance of Islamic terror suspects from the London bombings in 2005 and information about terror training in Pakistan.
Details of the Liam Smith murder outside Altcourse Prison in Fazakerley and the fatal stabbing of mother Rachel Jones in Everton.
Intelligence about police tactics from Operation Alarm – a major criminal investigation – and Operation Gingerbread.
Today, the Toxteth woman who found the memory stick said she was horrified such important data could easily have ended up in the wrong hands.
The mother, in her late 20s, contacted Merseyside Police who arranged for an officer to pick up the vital computer component.
She said: “I plugged the stick into my own computer as I thought it might contain university work and I could give it back to them.
“If that information had been seen by a career criminal, I dread to think what could have happened.
“The text should be encrypted in some way so if it’s lost or is seen by someone who it’s not intended for, they can’t read it. THE LIVERPOOL ECHO