Summary proceedings at Courts

All accused for summary trials (including JP) should be automatically excused from attending court for their Intermediate diet unless they are representing themself or wishing to plead guilty. These are the courts which have a mass volume of people sitting inside or waiting together outside. The accused's lawyer will suffice in representing their needs etc. Courts should start running earlier, ie at 0800 rather than 0930 . Allow all deferred sentences to run till 1000 then have a gap of 45 mins to clear the building to a certain extent and then have other cases - trials/bail reviews etc call - the notice having been given to lawyers and accused of the timeline.
COPFS and Defence lawyers must engage more prior to trial proceedings and any case to be adjourned should be proposed at the Intermediate diet (or by mutual agreement prior to the trial) rather than both sides waiting till the trial diet when witnesses etc have attended. Sheriffs should be much stricter at refusing adjournments at the trial diet.

Why the contribution is important

A huge number of accused turn up for proceedings (esp ID) when they are in the dock for literally 1 minute. Their presence is realistically not required and their absence would allow for social distancing of some format to take place.
There are numerous inefficiences with the court system and and this is an opportunity to take forward long term improvements.

by Samsdc on May 08, 2020 at 07:17AM

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