Now that I am retired having been many years a magistrate with a long awareness of the declining freedoms enjoyed by the ordinary citizen and a corresponding fear of the big brother state`s ever increasing encroachment on civil liberties I hope that my personal observations within these general parameters will be of interest to those with an open mind. Having been blogging with this title for many years against the rules of the Ministry of Justice my new found freedom should allow me to be less inhibited in these observations.

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Wednesday, 10 December 2014


Yesterday`s all day sitting was a statistical anomaly.  Forgetting the imperious terminology it was highly unusual.  We had two trials listed for the morning and similarly for the p.m. sitting.  
 Anomaly #1.  There was no overlisting.  Each was scheduled one and a half hours.

Anomaly #2.  At 10.00a.m. were present and ready to proceed one CPS prosecutor, one defence counsel, one defendant, one complainant and one police officer.

Anomaly #3.  At 11.45a.m. present and ready to proceed were one (the unchanged) CPS prosecutor, one defence solicitor, one defendant  and one complainant. 

Anomaly #4.  We rose at 1.05p.m. and enjoyed almost a whole hour to relax and to reflect that we had not had to endure a moment`s downtime.

Anomaly #5.  At 2.00p.m. with a new L/A in her place we entered the courtroom to be faced with a defendant already standing in the dock awaiting identification, a smiling CPS prosecutor silently acknowledging her being recognised by the bench and defence counsel making some hurried notes and confirming she had been able to see the prosecution CCTV footage on her laptop. Both parties confirmed they were ready to proceed.

Anomaly #6.  At c 3.15p.m. having sentenced the previous defendant the dock was, within two minutes,  occupied by the fourth defendant of the day with his solicitor almost immediately on his feet to request an adjournment which was opposed by CPS and refused by the bench.  Having heard evidence from complainant, police officer and defendant  and deliberating for ten minutes sentencing concluded at 4.45p.m.

Anomaly #7.  No matters were put over to another day.

Will such a day happen again during my remaining time on the bench?  As I said at the start of this post; the day was a statistical anomaly.

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