David Pinto

Mother cannot mourn her son as her brother was wrongfully convicted of his murder

David Pinto is serving a life sentence for a muder her did not commit

“I’ve lost my son and now I’m losing my brother too. I feel totally let down by the police investigation. I can’t fully grieve for my son until my innocent brother is set free.”

— Jennifer Pinto, murder victim’s mother

In 2013, David Pinto could hardly believe his ears when a jury convicted him of murdering his nephew, Genson Courtney. “It’s mad,” David says. “For people to think I would shoot my nephew is absolute rubbish. I love him.”

Genson, who was the stepson of celebrity gangster Dave Courtney, had been shot dead in North Greenwich one evening in July 2011, aged 23.

As the prosecution admitted at the trial, there wasn’t “any direct evidence of the involvement of the defendants; there are no-eye witnesses who have identified either man as being involved in the shooting; there is no CCTV evidence of the incident that reveals the involvement of the defendants and neither has made any admissions as to their involvement.”

However when initially talking to the Operation Trident’s victim liaison personnel assigned to support his family, David told them he was at a friend’s house when Genson was shot – because he didn’t want to admit that he was actually out couriering drugs.

Operation Trident followed up on various gang related leads, but could not make a case. So instead they built a case against David using telephone and cell site data. This placed David in an area that covered the murder scene, but was also wide enough to contain the house he shared with his wife in addition to the houses of his mum, sister and best friend.

The police theorized that David had killed his nephew because of an argument over some money. Our investigation suggests it is much more likely Genson was killed in in a gang related feud.

David remains at a high security prison where he is serving his life sentence. A devoted father of four, he sends the money he earns as a kitchen worker home to support them. His imprisonment has been hard on his family as well as him: “I’m a dad. I’m always with my children. It is hard. They’re suffering as well. It isn’t just me in here.”

Genson’s mother insists she cannot mourn her son’s death until her brother’s wrongful conviction is overturned. “If you know something that could help the lawyers prove his innocence, please, please let them know,” she says.

 

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