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Why do we keep investing in failure?

Posted by - 16th January 2018

A few days ago at a police station my colleague overheard three police officers discuss a case. One asked why the other officers bothered to do any formal interviews. ‘Just encourage the suspect to sign off on a ‘contemp note’ and you do don’t have to bother with all that,’ he swaggered. My sharp-eared colleague

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JusticeWatch: Uncork the Gauke

Posted by - 12th January 2018

Uncork the Gauke The ancient post of lord chancellor was ‘one of the hottest in government judging by its speed of turnover’, wrote Frances Gibb and Richard Ford in the Times. David Gauke has become the sixth holder in as many years, the first lawyer since Ken Clarke and first solicitor in the job. ‘Reaction to the

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David Gauke becomes the sixth Lord Chancellor in eight years

Posted by - 11th January 2018

Solicitor David Gauke is to become the sixth Lord Chancellor in eight years and the third appointed under Theresa May as prime minister following this week’s cabinet reshuffle. He is reckoned to be the first solicitor to become Lord Chancellor and ends the recent run of non-lawyers in the post. Chris Grayling was the first

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The Liam Allan case is the tip of the iceberg

Posted by - 10th January 2018

In December 2017 there was a considerable outcry following the case of Liam Allan, a middle class white man studying criminology who had been charged with rape. Crucial material was not disclosed or properly reviewed by the police which totally undermined the case against the defendant and the case was dropped. The Director of Public

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Historical injustice for persons born out of wedlock and their right to British Citizenship still lingers on

This article concerns only one of several historical injustices in British nationality law. For decades, it discriminated against people born out of wedlock to British fathers by not allowing those fathers to pass on their nationality to their child. On 1 January 1983, the British Nationality Act 1981 took effect. From that time, British nationality

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JusticeWatch: Full disclosure

Posted by - 5th January 2018

Full disclosure Commentators were analysing the collapse of two rape prosecutions (Liam Allen and Isaac Itiary) both due to police failure to disclose relevant material to the defence. There were ‘competing narratives’, noted an Observer editorial. Some saw the failed cases as a sign that “the pendulum has now swung the other way in a police

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Grayling Day

MoJ to restore Grayling’s’ ideological’ prison legal aid cuts

Posted by - 4th January 2018

The Ministry of Justice has confirmed that legal aid will be restored for three areas of prison law from next month. In a letter sent to the Howard League for Penal Reform, the MoJ confirmed that a statutory instrument had been laid before parliament making arrangements for the changes to the scheme to come into force on

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JusticeWatch: ‘Mutineer’ lawyers and anger on the bench

Posted by - 15th December 2017

Dominic Grieve ‘not a headbanger’ The government’s EU withdrawal bill was ‘rushed into parliament’ without a draft text and suffered from ‘profound flaws, wrote human rights lawyer Schona Jolly for the Guardian. ‘It was not particularly surprising, then, to see that the majority of the Tory rebels in this week’s defeat for the government had

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Misery and health problems for people living in terrible conditions ‘compounded’ by court delays

Posted by - 13th December 2017

Court closures and the 2013 legal aid cuts were leading to ‘serious delays’ in issuing and hearing cases including possession matters, homeless appeals and claims for disrepair, according to housing lawyers. Sophie Bell, a housing partner at the London legal aid firm Hodge Jones & Allen which represents families affected by the Grenfell Tower fire,

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