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Content is updated regularly here (as is availability on www.freelanceadvocacyservices.uk )
Greg Foxsmith COURT AVAILABILITY good availability for this month- see www.freelanceadvocacyservices.uk). Book via email@example.com
Disclosure Disaster The trial of a criminology student accused of rape collapsed yesterday when it was revealed that police had failed to reveal evidence proving his innocence. Yesterday the trial judge demanded a review of disclosure of evidence by the police and warned of the risks of a “serious miscarriages of justice” after hearing that prosecutors were not handing material to defence lawyers to save costs. Report here
Happy Christmas! Great to see so many criiminal lawyers wearing Christmas jumpers today for #ChristmasJumperDay! I was glad to have an opportunity to joint the GTS Hackney Office for Christmas drinks-thanks guys! All freelance solicitors are grateful to be included in Christmas parties of the firms they work for.
LCCSA response to proposed PACE changes here –very worrying proposals to interview suspects on BWV without access to legal advice
Specialist prosecutors should be appointed to take charging decisions in cases of mentally ill suspects, a campaign group has said as it accused the criminal justice system of “letting down” the vulnerable.
Justice, the independent law reform group, said in a report published this morning that from first contact with the police through to sentencing, “there remain fundamental problems with the English justice system’s response to mental health”.
Law Society JR challenge to MoJ on PPE cut. The Law Society said that “concerns over the sustainability of the fragile criminal legal aid sector in England and Wales” had forced it to go to court for a judicial review of the Ministry of Justice’s proposals.
Defendants having to identify their nationality in court -an appeal for information. (See blog Name Number and Nationality on the provisions and their inherent absurdities) I believe these provisions can be challenged due to the inherently discriminatory nature of this legislation. I am in contact with other lawyers who are considering strategies to remove this provision, but we need to know how the legislation is being enforced. Have you been involved with or witnessed such a case? Please let me know! We can exchange info to see if there is any uniformity of approach, and evaluate the impact. Email firstname.lastname@example.org Thank you
More info on the Law Society Gazette website-with a lively comments thread! https://www.lawgazette.co.uk/law/defendant-nationality-declarations-offensive/5063715.article
Police reckon 10,000 cases affected by ‘data manipulation’ in biggest forensics scandal in years. Read more in the Justice Gap here
RIP Jeremy Hutchinson. My book review here
The Youth Justice Legal Centre provides training to lawyers who act for children in criminal proceedings. The centre has already trained more than 50 lawyers and aims to instruct enough so that every child involved with the criminal justice system has access to a trained legal adviser. Check out their website and sign up for updates.
Public watchdog says Aylesbury prison is in trouble, with violence, 500 incidents of self-harm, and makes recommendations for action by Ministers. It is in the Secretary of State’s constituency. IMB Report here https://s3-eu-west-2.amazonaws.com/imb-prod-storage-1ocod6bqky0vo/uploads/2017/11/Aylesbury-2016-17-2.pdf
Shocking state of young offender institutions revealed yet another shocking report, detail here
MOJ Budget cuts confirmed to be 40% by 2020. See Gazette here for detail
Other Freelance Advocate support:-
Agency cover at Highbury Theresa Hendrickx 07949243949
Central Booking http://www.centralbookingadvocates.com/
Bike In September I cycled from London to Paris. Please sponsor me here!
Music My Christmas playlist here 🎅🏻
Lawyer of the month-November -Diana Payne
Diana is a partner at Blackfords solicitors. She is also training officer for the LCCSA, responsible for delivering a wide range of talks, lectures and events for members. Her report for the last year as delivered at the AGM can be seen here.
Special thanks this week to Rebecca Cook, and Alecsandra Rees 👍
Congratulations to the new partners and promotions in the expanding Criminal team at HJA (great Party BTW ! 👍)
Lawyer of the Month for October was Charlotte Watts. Charlotte was the inspiration for and organiser of the event “the Lammy Review- a conversation”. An outstanding advocate and tenacious fighter for justice, Charlotte is counsel at 2 Hare Court.
RIP Aidan McCroary. Very sad to hear that Freelance solicitor Aidan passed away at the weekend. Rest in peace.