Two West Midlands Police officers who admitted perverting the course of public justice were acquitted yesterday on a judge's ruling.
The decision to allow Police Constable Arif Latif, aged 38, and disgraced ex- Pc Tariq Nawaz, aged 39, to vacate their guilty pleas came after Inspector Mark Bullivant was cleared of a similar charge.
The trio had been accused of conspiring to cover up an unauthorised approach to a prisoner but following lengthy legal arguments at Warwick Crown Court, Judge Marten Coates ruled that the prosecution case did not support the allegations.
Insp Bullivant, aged 44, who was based at Belgrave Road police station in Birmingham, had denied the charge and was due to stand trial.
All three men were acquitted after Judge Coates quashed the indictment and refused leave for the prosecution to amend it to allow the case to be put on a different basis.
Insp Bullivant's trial was scheduled for January but did not go ahead after the prosecuting said it could not continue because it did not believe there was a criminal offence.
The judge's ruling came after William Emlyn-Jones, defending Insp Bullivant, said the investigation his client was accused of trying to frustrate was an internal disciplinary matter.
Nawaz has already left the force after being jailed for fraudulently claiming more than £11,000 in housing benefit from Sandwell Council.
A police spokesman said Insp Bullivant and Pc Latif would be subject to internal misconduct proceedings.