PETER PANNU has been accused of crimes ranging from beatings to bribery - but he has never been convicted. But the suspended anti-triad officer's legal saga rolled to a halt yesterday when Judge Jackson ended his corruption trial. When Judge Gould acquitted the senior inspector of assault last year, he wondered aloud whether a 'hidden agenda' lay behind Mr Pannu's prosecution. He noted 'an intricate relationship between the witnesses as well as various members of the police'. Three of the five witnesses had police connections: television star Ng Kai-ming is the son of an officer; karaoke bar owner Ka Po-ming was an ex-policeman; and the unofficial investigator of the incident was an off-duty police officer. Some officers claim Mr Pannu, of Indian origin, is the victim of jealousy and racism. They also say he has fallen prey to a job that requires close links with triads. Last year Judge Gould said the officer was treading on dangerous ground by mixing with 'underworld figures'. 'I do not know whether it is police policy to encourage 'intricate' relationships [with triad members]. If it is, it is a policy fraught with dangers for all concerned,' he said. The assault accusations arose from an internal disciplinary inquiry more than two years after they were allegedly committed. Mr Pannu was said to have beaten Wong Ching-hei outside Yee Do Po karaoke lounge, Tsim Sha Tsui, in February 1992. Fellow officer David Khosa then intervened allegedly persuading Mr Wong not to press charges. But the judge found the witnesses' stories were riddled with holes. Mr Pannu first achieved notoriety when he was accused of accepting bribes from the 'Tiger of Wan Chai', Andely Chan. He and Khosa were accused of accepting $20,000 from Chan in exchange for protection during a police investigation in which the Sun Yee On boss was a suspect. In January last year, the Organised Crime and Triad Bureau charged Mr Pannu with criminal intimidation after he allegedly threatened staff at Rick's Cafe, Tsim Sha Tsui. The charges were later withdrawn. Once the golden boy of the force, he rose quickly through the ranks after joining in February 1985, rising from inspector to senior inspector in three years. During his career, he earned more than 30 commendations and official compliments. Peter Pannu has consistently maintained his innocence and claims to be the victim of a vendetta. He promises to reveal 'his side of the story' once Khosa's trial for perverting the course of justice ends.