Tracking violent offenders

 A pilot is being carried out into electronic monitoring global positioning system. The aim of the pilot is to gain information to look at how existing and new electronic monitoring technologies could be used more effectively. A specific pilot is also taking place in London for offenders who have served a custodial sentence for knife … Continued

Getting Tough on Health and Safety

A number of recent cases indicate an increasingly robust approach to health and safety law breaches. Company Director Robert Harvey was imprisoned for ten months following an accident where a fellow worker was crushed to death by an excavator operated by Harvey. The prosecution established that Harvey had failed to undertake a sufficient risk assessment … Continued

Stop and Search

The police, with the support of the Home Office, are making more extensive use of stop and search powers. This new approach is partly due to rising public and political concern about knife crime. A hitherto little-used power to extend the use of stop and search is now being widely used by police forces. Section … Continued

Drink or Drug Driving – The Second Sample

In some cases, the police need to take either a blood or urine sample from a driver suspected of driving under the influence of drink or drugs. In almost all instances, the police opt for a blood sample. Part of the procedure is informing the suspect that they can if they wish request part of … Continued

Diplomatic Immunity

The somewhat arcane topic of diplomatic Immunity has hit the news headlines following the tragic death of 19-year-old Harry Dunn, as a result of a road traffic collision. It has been confirmed that the wife of an American diplomat has returned to the United States and will not face a further criminal investigation in the … Continued

Conservatives Signal Tougher Sentencing Regime

At the Conservative Party Conference this week, the government indicated that it was to get tough on offenders who commit some of the most serious offences, with automatic release at the half-way point being removed in many cases. Figures for 2018 disclose that for the most serious sexual and violent offences (those that carry a … Continued

Delayed Justice

Janet Commins was born on 9 June 1960. On 7 January 1976, shortly after 7.00 pm, she left her home in Flint to meet friends at the local swimming baths. She left a note for her parents, as she often did, to say that she would be back at around 8.30 pm. She saw her … Continued

The Absent Witness

In some instances, it is not convenient for a witness to be present in court to give evidence, generally because they live or work some distance away from the court, or some other good reason. There are legal provisions that cater for this scenario, and while the prosecution widely uses them (notably for police officers), … Continued

More Sentences at Risk of Prosecution Appeal

The prosecution, via the Attorney General, has the right to ask the Court of Appeal to consider whether sentences for certain offences are unduly lenient. How does the scheme work? Anyone can ask the Attorney General to consider whether a sentence is unduly lenient. If the Attorney agrees an appeal will be lodged within 28 … Continued

Jury Challenge

It is a common feature of American courtroom drama that a defence attorney moves to remove a juror that they do not like the look of. Many clients wonder whether the same type of challenge can take place in an English courtroom. The Jury Pool In some circumstances there can be a challenge to the … Continued

Airports, Planes and Alcohol

It has been reported in the press that 500 people have been arrested while drunk on a plane at British airports in the last three years. For many people a holiday begins once cases have been checked in, and what is the harm in that? It is clear that drunkenness has become an issue. The … Continued

Sentencing and Delay – Can it work in your favour?

There have been widespread reports in the press about spare courtroom capacity, with judicial sitting days at an all-time low. These reports correspond to our own experience. When court delay is combined with significant delays in investigating and charging defendants to court, this can mean a very long period between the commission of any crime … Continued