OBSESSED by his ex-mistress but rebuffed by her, Labour MP Ron Brown

set about destroying windows and glass objects in her flat and then laid

blame on others to protect his political career, it was alleged at Lewes

Crown Court yesterday.

The MP had acted in Mrs Nonna Longden's home at St Leonard's on Sea

out of jealousy, Mr Richard Camden Pratt told the jury in his final


Out of spite Mr Brown had taken a photograph of her when she was a

baby, a christening present, and a brooch from an aunt because he knew

that doing so would hurt her, Mr Camden Pratt told the jury as he summed

up the prosecution case.

Mr Brown, 49, MP for Edinburgh Leith, pleads not guilty to two charges

-- one alleging criminal damage and the other theft involving various

items of jewellery and two pairs of knickers.

0 Mr Edward Rees, defending, referred throughout his address to Mrs

Longden as Nonna and to her current lover, Mr Dermot Redmond, as


Mr Rees has alleged that it was Mr Redmond who caused the damage in

the flat, estimated at #778.

''It is not an accident that glass was involved. It is someone who has

flipped,'' Mr Rees told the jury. ''There is no grander or more emphatic

gesture than smashing glass to cause maximum effect.''

He argued that Mr Redmond, fresh into a love affair, was the more

likely culprit.

Mr Rees also alleged both Mrs Longden and Mr Redmond had lied on oath

in the witness box. He could not deny that Mr Brown had lied to the

police, but the two interviews he gave to senior officers on the night

of the incident, although contested, were not on oath. He suggested that

these lies were to keep the press at bay and protect his political


The ''lies'' told to the court were different, Mr Rees suggested.

Dealing with Mrs Longden's evidence, he declared: ''What a little

monkey! What a way she lied on oath.''

She was not prepared to make a simple lie, but wanted to sew a web

through it, he said.

He asked the jury, referring to Mr Redmond: ''Would you buy a second

hand car from him?'' Several times counsel insisted this was not a joke.

He told the jury that they knew the answer was ''No'', so they should

not convict Mr Brown.

Mr Redmond was a convicted con-man who had been sentenced to three

years' imprisonment, Mr Rees emphasised.

''Something happened that night in that flat which has not been

explained. Whatever it was it was pretty hairy and went on for an


He insisted that the evidence of neither of the main witnesses for the

prosecution could fill in missing time.

The case, he said, had warranted a degree of press coverage. It

seemed, he told the jury, to have produced excitement of almost orgasmic

proportions for the editors of popular newspapers.

''If you want to join in the fun and brand Ron Brown as a stealer of

knickers, so be it,'' Mr Rees told the jury. ''But you are going to join

a press fantasy which has not been part of the prosecution's case.''

Judge John Glover told the jury: ''I am almost afraid of mentioning

ladies' knickers in this case.'' But suggested that this aspect of the

trial might have been taken out of all proportion, and Mr Rees's

comments could well have put them in the proper perspective.

Then, referring to the fact that Mr Brown gave evidence for only eight

minutes, Mr Rees declared that it could be a tactical mistake for a

defendant to go into the witness box to give evidence on his own behalf.

Mr Brown had been questioned by police, so why give the Crown two

bites at the cherry?

Also, in evidence the prosecution would have gained more information

from the politically sensitive tapes which Mr Brown had been intent on

recovering from the flat, and under cross-examination Mr Brown would

have had to face up to more details about his personal life coming out

in public.

''The defence has put the shutters down,'' Mr Rees told the jury.

He said that he had not intended to imply, during a rigorous

cross-examination, that Mrs Longden had ever intended to sell her story

to the press. Then after a pause, Mr Rees added with some emphasis:


In the summing up by the prosecution, Mr Camden Pratt told the jury:

''Really the Crown says that this was a man acting out of spite and

jealousy. It was not a theft for financial gain. It was taking someone

else's property out of spite.

''Mr Brown prevaricated when interviewed by the police. He lied when

interviewed by the police . . . and shifted blame on to other people in

order to save his own reputation.

''To save his own skin Mrs Longden and Mr Redmond were put through the

hoop under cross-examination over a wide range of matters and areas not

immediately relevant to that evening with which we are concerned.''

Mr Brown listened, resting his chin on his clenched hands. Behind the

dock his wife, May, also listened intently. She has been there

throughout the trial.

''Put out of your mind any political sympathy or any political bias

against Mr Brown,'' Mr Camden Pratt told the jury.

He told them not to speculate, but to base their verdicts on the

facts. For example he asked if Mr Brown's account to the police was

accurate when the MP said he was being attacked by Mr Redmond.

Was Mr Redmond spinning around like a Dervish, smashing glass in front

as well as behind?

Mr Brown was an articulate man. He asked the jury: ''When interviewed

by the police do you consider that he was frank, accurate, helpful, and


''Or, on the other hand, do you consider he was prevaricating,

deliberately unclear, not telling the truth, and at times lying?''

Drink, the Crown said, had played a major role in the incident. Mr

Camden Pratt suggested that the MP had had a good deal more to drink

that night than he was prepared to admit.

The Judge told the jury that a great Judge in the eighteenth century

had said that all citizens in this country should be treated equally --

whether they be buff coat or red coat, private citizen or soldier.

Mr Brown was an MP, and the case was attracting publicity. But if did

not matter if he was a private citizen or an MP. The case of Mr Brown

should not be judged by any different standard than that of anyone else.

The jury will retire to consider its verdicts this morning.