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Police: MAGISTRATES NEED SUPPORT

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace


Like many other Justices of the Peace when I began sitting in an actual court as a new appointee I was informed of the advantages of joining the Magistrates Association.  For a fairly small outlay I considered it a no brainer. I had in my professional life reached the rarified heights of being on the national council of the professional organisation which looked after the interests of its members including me.  Only later did I discover that the MA according to its charitable status did and does nothing to protect or support the individual member. The two magisterial colleagues, however,  who were our bench`s representatives on the MA council seemed to enjoy their position and persuaded many to attend the occasional lectures sponsored by the organisation. About seven years into my tenure I attended MA headquarters with a couple of colleagues having accepted an invitation to explore ways in which members could use their expertise in their commercial/academic/professional lives to the MA`s advantage.  I offered some suggestions and...

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Police: BEFORE YOUR VERY EYES

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace


Many interested parties have wondered what has become of so called "leadership magistrates" appointed as the toads of the Ministry of Justice three years ago the T word being used of course in its pejorative form although whether the current incumbents have thick or poisonous skins is beyond my ken. All that is known publicly are their names and regions although that information had to be dragged out of Petty France.  Further details will be found on this site by typing "leadership magistrates" in the search box.  These folk are not representative of magistrates. The only representative JPs are those elected to be chairman of their bench or representatives to the Magistrates Association the latter body annually appearing to lose its credibility to influence the MOJ.  The latest example is that it did not know exactly how many magistrates were currently on the MOJ list.  To be fair the MOJ until very recently did not know either.  It so happens the number was 1,000 less than previously accounted for. It seems that now those MOJ lackeys...

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Police: POLITICAL TRUST! UNKNOWN BUT NOT UNKNOWABLE PROBLEMS AHEAD

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace

 


A cohesive society exists on trust. Individuals who travel from strangers to friendship or closer can only experience worthwhile relationships when there is mutual trust.  Although there are millions of pages of company and commercial law many, especially small businesses, base their relationships and often their commercial success on trust. It might have been the case that in politics also trust was a given particularly at the higher levels of party politics. We are seeing every day on our television screens and in various media that now trust has completely broken down with the lies of Donald Trump being listed almost daily by fact checkers on CNN. Sad to tell that innocuous virus which doesn`t originate in China but whose origin derives from the hearts of men (men includes women in this analogy) is increasing its infiltration into our daily lives. In this country it has been constrained by ancient rules, procedures and attitudes which I fear are no longer strong enough to withhold the pressures...

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Police: A COURT REPORT IN COVENTRY LIVE BETTER NOT PUBLISHED

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
Reporting from magistrates courts is by necessity often sparse.  Indeed the public is fortunate that court reporting is still undertaken at all by local print media. The cost for publishers is often an expense ill afforded.  My last court activity was over five years ago but after seventeen years on the bench it takes sometimes only a moment or two for old memories to be revived.  And that is what happened when I read this short report.  Now admittedly there is no detail on the offender`s circumstances, his previous offending (if any) or any other material that might have been offered to the bench in mitigation.  There is no information whether as is usually the case a probation pre sentence report was presented to the bench. We do not even know if he were represented although a duty solicitor must be engaged for an offender at first appearance if there is the possibility of custody. Whether or not this was the case we just don`t know. All in all this was court reporting at the lowest level worthy of the...

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Police: TELEVISION LICENSE EVASION TO BE DE CRIMINALISED AT LAST

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
This morning I have felt as if I have visited an aged relative`s house where my memories are of long ago and don`t seem linked to the occasion yet they are because otherwise these memories would not exist; the house and its contents would be viewed as a completely new experience. Today HMCTS has listed tomorrow`s court lists on line and publicly available for all magistrates courts in England and Wales. This is undoubtedly a "shout about it from the rooftops" occasion from an organisation which has trumpeted the benefits of hundreds of millions pounds invested in new technology. It has been a long time coming. A decade ago Camberwell Green court in South London was to be the showpiece of the latest technical advances then available.  It failed miserably.  There is no doubt that Convid-19 has accelerated these latest innovations in a courts system which has systematically been deprived of capital funding these last ten years. Naturally enough I have viewed the listings at my old court.  Having...

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Police: MINISTRY OF JUSTICE IN ITS BUBBLE JUST KEEPS ON WOBBLING ALONG

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
On 22nd June I mused on judge only trials at crown court. This possibility in my opinion was based on the chaos in scheduling trials in crown courts owing to the close down caused by Convid 19. It would appear that there are about 30,000 trials awaiting a court date. Since crown courts re-opened about ten weeks ago only 250 trials have been heard in England and Wales.The delays are such that already a suspected drug dealer was ordered by HH Judge Keith Raynor to be released from prison where he had been on remand because next year was the soonest a court date could be found. The demands on space in the courts which are functioning are causing some anxiety as to possible communication and consequent jury tampering owing to the proximity of jurors to the defendants in the dock.  Indeed recently at one of the most high profile trials in recent years; that of those accused of killing PC Andrew Harper, a juror was dismissed after she was heard discussing matters with the defendants. The country`s most...

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Police: PROBLEM WITH COMMENTS

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
I have just become aware that e mail notification from Google to me that a comment has been posted for moderation is not functioning.  Would be commenters, I would request, complain to Google or try another browser if their legitimate comment does not appear within 24 hours.


Police: JUSTICE SYSTEM ON ITS ROAD TO HELL

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
There is no doubt that Convid 19 has demonstrated so very clearly that much of the British infrastructure from the prime minister`s office downwards and in all directions sidewards is unfit for purpose.  And surprise surprise The Ministry of Justice is up there among those at the top of the pyramid of incompetence.  On April 24th the  MOJ announced new regulations to enable risk-assessed prisoners who were within two months of their release date to be temporarily released from custody as part of the national approach to managing public services. At June 1st just 79 prisoners had benefited from this early release provision.  At June 29th A total of 505 prisoners in England and Wales had tested positive for the virus and 24 prisoners  had died having tested positive for the virus from the start of the outbreak up until June 19th. Of these 21 were elderly or had underlying health conditions. Today the MOJ announced that the early release scheme would be "paused" on August 27th. Considering the many tens of thousands of...

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Police: THERE`S A GOOD FELLOW

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
Yesterday I posted the latest available report from the organisation which is responsible for collating reports of police misconduct.  Of course all the leg work is carried out by disciplinary boards of the country`s constabularies.  Somebody with the energy and statistical interest and/or knowledge might comment that what is in the report is far less intriguing than what is omitted. The decisions made at lower levels seem in some cases to be suitable for an old boys club.

Commander Julian Bennett was and still might be the Met`s officer responsible for drug strategy except that he was suspended last month over alleged drug misuse. Apparently he refused to take a drug test after a tip off. He himself has chaired hundreds of of disciplinary hearings . The IOPC has referred the case back to Scotland Yard to investigate. 

Another senior officer at Scotland Yard; Chief Superintendent Rob Atkin, has been "reprimanded" for keeping quiet about a close personal relationship with a junior female officer he was mentoring. Not only was he...

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Police: 3RD NAME IN A DECADE TO COMPLAIN ABOUT POLICE

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
This is a link to the latest annual report of the Independent Office of Police Conduct.  It is a very wordy document on which I make no comment except that as far as I know an organisation to monitor police behaviour has been renamed twice in the last decade i.e. this is its 3rd title, a sign like other such organisations concerning border authority or those investigating criminal records that government considers renaming rather like Catholics consider the confession; gives the participant a clean slate to continue as before.  




Latest The Justice Of The Peace Stories

MAGISTRATES NEED SUPPORT
BEFORE YOUR VERY EYES
POLITICAL TRUST! UNKNOWN BUT NOT UNKNOWABLE PROBLEMS AHEAD
A COURT REPORT IN COVENTRY LIVE BETTER NOT PUBLISHED
TELEVISION LICENSE EVASION TO BE DE CRIMINALISED AT LAST

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