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Police: MAXINE DE BRUNNER: A DISGRACE TO THE POLICE

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
Recently BBC TV has been showing short docudramas from forty years ago; "Law and Order" in which the corruption of the Metropolitan Police, often hinted at but rarely investigated, is depicted in all its rotten reality. That rottenness has never been entirely eliminated owing perhaps to political awareness of what problems and embarrassment the revelations would cause or the fact that the corrosive constituents are still in place; greed, pride and ego. 

The history of an ex senior Met officer Assistant Commissioner Maxine de Brunner is a history of all that is wrong with the Met. I first commented upon her activities  on 10th June 2016  and then a month later and finally on 19th August 2016.  This sad sordid story is now concluded. Chief Inspector  Adrian Denby a decorated and respected officer has been awarded £870K as a result of de Brunner`s sex discriminating actions against him. That it has taken two years to achieve the wronged officer`s vindication is a disgrace.  That the Met is considering an appeal...

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Police: THE PERCEIVED QUALITY OF LAY MAGISTRATES

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
There are around 16,000 magistrates in England and Wales and around 300+  District and Deputy District Judges (MC). It has been the practice since time began that the powers that be namely Justices Clerks or their Deputies who run individual courts to allocate to DJs those matters which might be of public significance, supposedly too esoteric for the lay magistrate too understand or involve complicated law.  I have in the past whilst active but to deaf ears protested about this syphoning of cases. The legal profession by and large disagrees with my point of view and to some degree I can understand this.  There is a large minority of Justices of the Peace whose limited intellectual capacity would be exposed if presented with arguments which strained their brain matter.  Nevertheless IMHO justice is seen to be done when a mini jury of three brings in a verdict as opposed to a single professional District Judge. Such might have been the case last week when a police officer who tasered her force`s own race relations...

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Police: OUTSOURCING SCANDALS, BREXIT, MAY MUST GO

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
From the days of Margaret Thatcher outsourcing has become a watchword for successive governments.  The philosophy behind this form of contracting was and is that much of the expenditure was off the current balance sheet, capital expenditure could be reduced with the price paid  being contracts that were not fit for purpose and trade unions would not have power over the outsourcing company`s employees as they (the employees) would be beholden to the company and not direct government) thus reducing union ability to control or influence said workers.  There have been many scandals affecting these companies and many have direct contracts with the MOJ and Home office  eg running prisons, transportation of prisoners to and from court, probation services, providing translation services for police and courts.  One such company is Sodexo. In 2013 the company was intimately involved in the horsemeat scandal.  In 2016 at Its Bronzefield Prison there was the tragic death of a prisoner.  A year ago its Northumberland Prison...

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Police: LATEST COURT SALES INFORMATION

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace


Latest numbers on court closures are below.









Police: RESPECT!

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
I have long voiced my disdain whilst active and now retired of various displacement orders. Drinking banning orders are such an example; don`t drink in my patch........drink in somebody else`s.  They are often civil orders which lead to criminal charges if breached. They are generally a disgrace to our society and legislature. In Norwich a beggar was under the damacles sword of a community protection order when he was brought to court for breach. The CPS requested that a criminal behaviour order be imposed.  The bench refused that request.  My hat is doffed to their action or rather lack of.   May the magistracy as an organisation of individuals think very clearly before meekly complying with such requests from a CPS which just doesn`t know what to do in these circumstances and a Ministry of Justice which just doesn`t care.


Police: FROM THE PARLIAMENTARY HORSE`S MOUTH

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
A couple of recent statements and information from the House of Commons.

The first copied below is part of a speech from Alex Chalk, Conservative MP for Cheltenham on the Grenfell Inquiry.  His words should be noted by those who criticise magistrates for not having the intellectual ability to understand complex cases.

"From my experience, just an appeal from a magistrates court in a relatively modest case will involve a judge and two lay assessors. That is why it is critical that the other members of the panel, which includes Mr Justice Moore-Bick, have decision-making power. They cannot simply be there to be thought of as making up the numbers; they must bring their weight of experience from the community and shared understanding. By the way, over many centuries lay people have shown themselves well able to analyse complex issues and do justice. To those people who might suggest we have simply a single judge, it is no answer to say, “Oh, it’s too complicated, too difficult, too technical.” Lay people are...

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Police: IS AN ENGINE CUT OUT A GET OUT FOR MOBILE PHONE USE WHILST DRIVING?

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
It has been illegal for a motorist to use a mobile phone while driving since 2003. This includes handling the device, sending a text or following a map, even when the car is waiting at a set of traffic lights, as the engine is still running. In 2017 stricter phone driving laws came into force in a bid to deter people from breaking the rules.

A few years ago owing to an EU determination to reduce pollution many cars were being offered as standard equipment an engine cut out when the car was stationary.  I wonder if any legal eagles have attempted to use this factor in an attempt to have a client acquitted of the charge of using a mobile phone when driving. 


Police: CITIZENSHIP POST BREXIT

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
Currently there is no requirement for a jury member to be a British citizen. Surprisingly there is a similar lack of citizenship needed for an aspiring M.P.  Anyone wishing to stand as an M.P. must be over 18 years of age, and be a British citizen or citizen of a Commonwealth country or the Republic of Ireland.  In the light of current events perhaps the time has come to alter the rules of both organisations. 


Police: THE CASE TO BRING BACK THE WORKHOUSE

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
Six months ago I posted on the benefits of the workhouse if the Victorian model were updated for the 21st century. The situation over the weekend at a special sitting of Nottingham Magistrates Court was just another example of what courts nationwide see every day; it is a disgrace to the society we live in which we are told by politicians of various hues is the 5th largest economy in the world.  During my lifetime since the end of WW2 this country that stood alone for a year against Hitler has been unable to harness the strengths of its people to do in peacetime what they did in war.  That is not the fault of the people but of those of Left and Right who since then have mismanaged the economy.  There is currently a BBC programme on what was the world`s most innovative aircraft manufacturer.  I recollect as a young child my father taking me to see the then largest passenger plane in the world; the Bristol Brabazon. It never was more than a prototype because its piston engine power was about to be superseded by jet...

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Police: RAPE "NOT PROVEN" BUT ONLY IN SCOTLAND

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
When it comes to society, justice and the law Scottish thinking is often practically and philosophically some distance ahead of the other parts of the UK.  The alcohol tax introduced this week is an example which is highly unlikely not to be followed south of the border in due course.  On the subject of trials the Scots verdict, unique in the English speaking world, has many merits as does the requirement of two witnesses, even if police officers,  to corroborate evidence.  However when the subject is rape controversy is never far away in Scotland as elsewhere. Conviction rates are bandied about like jelly beans depending upon which side of the argument one is supporting.  The recent problems disclosed or rather not disclosed in recent high profile rape trials in England have brought the topic to a wide audience.

In March in Scotland there were angry protests at new guidance that could force rape victims to give evidence against their will. Earlier this week Scotland`s chief judge suggested that rape...

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Latest The Justice Of The Peace Stories

MAXINE DE BRUNNER: A DISGRACE TO THE POLICE
THE PERCEIVED QUALITY OF LAY MAGISTRATES
OUTSOURCING SCANDALS, BREXIT, MAY MUST GO
LATEST COURT SALES INFORMATION
RESPECT!

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