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Police: CALLING A SPADE A SPADE: EVEN AN ISLAMIST

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
The term political correctness is now immediately recognisable. It wasn`t always so. It is a term used to describe language, policies or measures that are intended to avoid offence or disadvantage to members of particular groups in society. In public discourse and the media the term is generally used as a pejorative with an implication that these policies are excessive or unwarranted. Since the late 1980s, the term has been used to describe a preference for inclusive language and avoiding language or behaviour that can be seen as excluding, marginalising or insulting groups of people disadvantaged or discriminated against such as groups defined by ethnicity, sex and gender.  But it is more than that. By the turn of the century it had become codified by those on the political Right to signify the Left`s concealment of reality in matters often but not exclusively  in regard to ethnic minorities  and their problems. It has become a totem of political philosophy. An example of such thinking surrounds the NHS especially...

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Police: WILL MAGISTRATES WANT TO SIT UNTIL AGE 75?

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace

Perhaps next year magistrates will actually have the opportunity if they so wish to sit until the age of 75.  How many would wish to do so is a moot point.  The parliamentary process that initiated this long considered process is copied below.

 Motion for leave to bring in a Bill (Standing Order No. 23)

2.52 pm
Edward Timpson (Eddisbury) (Con)

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I beg to move,

That leave be given to bring in a Bill to amend section 13 of the Courts Act 2003 to change the retirement age for magistrates from 70 to 75; and for connected purposes.

Magistrates, or justices of the peace, are ordinary people hearing cases in court in their community, and have been a fundamental feature of our judicial system since 1361. They continue to be chosen from people of good character, commitment, social awareness and reliability—those who can communicate effectively and are capable of making sound choices when sitting in judgment on their peers.

I had the pleasure of appearing in front of many magistrates while practising on the then Chester and...

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Police: LATEST SENTENCING GUIDELINE OFF ITS TRACKS

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
The vast majority of the population is not in any way connected with the justice process from the police officer who used to be on the streets  to the judges of the supreme court and all functionaries in between. That is why successive Tory governments over the last decade have allowed our so called justice system to, using a vintners` term now in common usage, wither on the vine. That phrase defined as; "something being destroyed very gradually, usually because no one does anything to help or support it" perhaps describes our justice system more accurately than in its original meaning. Add to it a systemic reduction in resources available and the culpability of government becomes increasingly apparent. The last decade has also seen our sentencing system codified to such an extent it would have made Napoleon proud.  Having been retired from the bench for over five years my own opinions on the above have almost imperceptibly morphed from a sentencer within the legal orbit to a knowledgeable asteroidal outsider on a...

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Police: MINISTRY OF JUSTICE SPEECHWRITERS ARE PROTECTING EMERGENCY WORKERS

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace

When I retired over five years ago those found guilty of common assault in theory  faced a maximum sentence of six months.  Most such offenders were sentenced to less than that and served only half the given sentence in prison being released on license  having done half their time.  Those who indeed were the subject of that six month maximum were usually found to be in the highest category of harm and culpability according to the Sentencing Guidelines. Often it was considered that if the victim were a public servant simply doing his/her job whilst being subjected to the assault that aggravating feature fed into the sentencing mix. However a year or so ago I learnt from a former colleague that public servants becoming assault victims in the course of their duties would, according to the government, be given the gratification of knowing that their assailant would be subject to a maximum incarceration of twelve months with the usual caveats of early guilty plea and early release. That of course...

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Police: BLM/ANTISEMITISM AND STOP & SEARCH

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace

The following post comprises government and parliamentary information, public information from the Metropolitan Police and reporting in the Manchester Evening news. 

The last census informed us that in England and Wales 86% were White, 8% were Asian/Asian British and 3% were Black/African/Caribbean/Black British. In London that figure for White falls to 69.7%.  Since 2009, the conviction ratio (the percentage of defendants convicted out of all those prosecuted) for indictable-only or 'either way' offences has increased for all ethnic groups. In 2017, the conviction ratios for Black and Mixed ethnic groups were lowest at 78.7% and 79%. In 2017, the conviction ratio was highest for defendants in the White ethnic group at 85.3%. In 2017 93% of White defendants prosecuted for drug offences were convicted compared with 86.6% of defendants from the Mixed ethnic group. In 2016/17 compared with the White ethnic group stops and searches proportionate to population size were more likely to be carried out on the Black (eight...

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Police: NO LONGER JUSTICE FOR THE PAUPER; ONLY THE PRINCE

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
The Crown Prosecution Service is perhaps the arm of the MOJ which is more exposed to criticism than any other.  In simple terms and by any interpretation it is failing.  There are many arguments to indicate this. Whilst I was active CPS began the use of non lawyers in place of legally qualified personnel. The quality or rather lack of quality of submissions was immediately apparent.  But of course the daily routines in the magistrates courts are rarely of interest to a wider public especially as the number of such courts has halved in a decade and the media are much less inclined to have court reporters in the remaining courts.  All manner of other issues, some mere candy floss from the Home Office which considers upping a sentence will cure the disease, including consideration for "victims"  when they are complainants, false statistics on rape by Left leaning women`s organisation and undoubted grievances of lawyers who are given little consideration and even less remuneration than their position demands....

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Police: JPs SOON ABLE TO RETIRE AT 75

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
It is now virtually certain that magistrates will shortly be allowed to sit until they retire at 75.  Perhaps some bright spark at MOJ immune from "diversity and ageist" viruses will look again at the youngest age at which they can be appointed and consider that at 18 most human beings have not developed the final brain connections which will see them attain adulthood. And it`s adults that are required to sit in judgement on their fellow citizens. 


Police: 18 IS TOO YOUNG TO BE A MAGISTRATE

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
Amongst many unexpected effects of the Convid 19 crisis the composition of juries in the crown court has come under scrutiny owing to the enormous backlog in trials which some experts are predicting could take four years or more to clear. This has caused some angst at the Ministry of Justice which has been suffering more than many other government departments from the austerity imposed from 2011 resulting in the closure of half the nation`s courts. 

The  jury system in England can be traced back to Henry II in the 12th Century becoming formalised under Magna Carta a century later when it can be said that the magistracy also came into being.  It wasn`t until 1919/1920 in the aftermath to the Great War that women became eligible both for the magistracy and for juries. From 1825 to 1962 a juror was required to own property.  In 1972 the age requirement for jury service was lowered from 21 to 18.   In 1988 the maximum age of jurors was raised from 65 to 70 and in 2016 to 75. In 1995/96 an inquiry undertaken by the Home Affairs...

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Police: JUDGE ONLY TRIALS??

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace

Historians or perhaps pedants will wax loudly that the history of trial by jury in England goes back to Magna Carta in 1215 which I suppose has some basis in fact if one is referring to the trial of lords and nobles of the realm. So: a very brief history....... For the common man or woman no such justice was available; a bench of magistrates consisting mainly of local landowners and/or power brokers was the seat of justice with considerable sentencing options; although the most serious offences of the day were sent to Assize Courts. Up to the middle of the 19th century JPs could sentence offenders to hanging. They could also sentence to transportation to North America and the Caribbean, to whipping and the stocks and to fines. Needless to say these benches consisted  of men only. It was in 1920 in the aftermath to the Great War that women became eligible for juries. The acts of 1825 laid down the following qualifications for jury service. In England and Wales they were  that a juror should possess an income of £10 a year from real estate...

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Police: MAGISTRATES` ETHNICITY

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace


This is a very short FYI  latest statistics table on the gender and ethnicity composition of the magistracy.




Latest The Justice Of The Peace Stories

CALLING A SPADE A SPADE: EVEN AN ISLAMIST
WILL MAGISTRATES WANT TO SIT UNTIL AGE 75?
LATEST SENTENCING GUIDELINE OFF ITS TRACKS
MINISTRY OF JUSTICE SPEECHWRITERS ARE PROTECTING EMERGENCY WORKERS
BLM/ANTISEMITISM AND STOP & SEARCH

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