Discover and read the best of Twitter Threads about #openjustice

Most recents (18)

I read 114 Prevention of Future Deaths Reports today, every one issued and uploaded to MoJ site this yr. I do this every few months and it never fails to make my nerves jangle. So much disregard for certain lives, with occasional glimmers of humanity.

Always such a mixed bag
1/
Emailed Kent Coroners Court earlier this week asking to attend a PIR remotely next Wednesday. Pointed out Chief Coroner's guidance on #OpenJustice. I'm in Devon and don't consider that it would be safe or proportionate for myself to attend court in person for a short hearing

2/
Doing so would involve at least 11 hours travelling on public transport and an overnight stay, and expose myself to what I consider to be approximately 30 hours of unnecessary risk.

Press perfectly able to attend remotely if Coroner allows.

3/
Read 10 tweets
I attended Laura Booth's 8th pre-inquest review meeting on Monday. PIR was remote, Coroner was in court at Sheffield Town Hall, everyone else online.

Laura died in October 2016, aged 21. Her parents, Ken and Patricia talked to @JayneMcCubbinTV here

1/25+
'We went in the hospital with our daughter for an eye operation, and we came out with a death certificate' Patricia told @JayneMcCubbinTV

An inquest was opened, 16mths after Laura died, after the BBC contacted the Coroner's Office to share their concerns.

2/
Laura liked jigsaws, colouring and doing craft activity, the only time she'd willingly wear her glasses. Laura liked watching TV, CBeebies, Mr Tumble and loved handbags and purses, bowling and being read to.

Laura's parents provided her with support 24/7, even in hospital.

3/ Image
Read 52 tweets
Curious goings-on at Westminster magistrates in prosecutions for breaking the first coronavirus lockdown:

- Convictions for offences ppl weren't prosecuted for
- Hefty fines handed out which may exceed the legal maximum
- Police allowed to try again when paperwork is botched
Westminster mags is using the Single Justice Procedure for these cases, behind-closed-doors with just a magistrate & legal advisor present to deal with them 'on the papers'.

Finding out what's happened hasn't been easy (story from last month): standard.co.uk/news/london/co…
I'm happy to report the #OpenJustice issues I highlighted have been looked into, the court has apologised and promised things will be different in the future.

The paperwork now I've seen, however, raises some brand-new questions.
Read 20 tweets
Thinking of Paula Rawnsley and all of Thomas's family and friends today. Thomas died in February 2015, coming up to 6yrs ago.

Last September I was in Sheffield Coroner's Court with Paula on Day 2 of his inquest when it was adjourned for more expert evidence.

1/LONG THREAD 25+
I just want to talk a little bit about Paula and her search for answers about what happened to Thomas. Paula told me that she had already been labelled as difficult way before Thomas died.

Thomas was a much loved youngest brother and enjoyed a happy childhood at home

2/
As a teenager Thomas became more anxious and Paula asked for support to keep him at home.

She thought maybe they could get some respite help, or some advice. Thomas used Makaton to communicate and was able to make most of his needs known to those he knew well

3/
Read 37 tweets
Secret Justice: London's Covid-19 lockdown breakers are being prosecuted behind closed doors and under a veil of secrecy: standard.co.uk/news/london/co…
I don't use the term 'secret justice' lightly, but there's no other way to describe what's been happening here.

- 100s of prosecutions dealt with behind closed doors
- Vital open justice safeguards ignored and forgotten
- Obviously flawed prosecutions going through unchallenged
When the Single Justice Procedure was introduced, it was justified as prosecutions for lowly offences - speeding, fare dodging, TV licences etc.
The media warned that #openjustice shouldn't be swept away - that one day people would care

Now it's being used for lockdown breaches
Read 4 tweets
Starting shortly - @article_39 v Secretary of State for Education, in the Court of Appeal. Have children’s rights been removed or diluted unlawfully?

Follow this thread for my live #OpenJustice reporting. To recap, watch & RT my video summary of the #ScrapSI445 journey so far.
And we’re off, virtual courtroom again. A few differences to the High Court session:
✅ 3 judges instead of 1. Lord Justices Underhill, Henderson & Baker.
✅ 1 day instead of 2.
✅ There is now a judgment (below) to work from, alongside evidence bundles.

article39.org.uk/2020/08/07/hig…
Lord Justice Underhill asks whether this case is considered 'academic' - that will be revisited towards the end of Jenni Richards QC's arguments on behalf of @article_39.

This is about whether the issue is still 'live' as most SI 445 regs are due to be withdrawn on 25 Sept.
Read 68 tweets
Just connected to court for the #CovidSEND judicial review case [It's very echoey, legal teams are in court, a number of people attending remotely through Skype]

Background thread here

I believe those in court are listed in attachment.
@polly_sweeney of @scottmoncrief, @SteveBroach of @39publiclaw and @AliceLIrving for claimants Amber and @1985Deanne Shaw and anonymous claimant ABC thru XYZ

@sarahhannett and Nathan Roberts of @matrixchambers and Mark Davies of @6PumpCourt for defendant SOS for @educationgovuk
As far as possible I will tweet word for word what is said, if not possible due to speed I'll paraphrase. I'll offer no analytical commentary, I'm simply trying to facilitate #OpenJustice thru live tweeting to a wider audience #CovidSEND
Read 629 tweets
I don't have the stomach to tweet this yrs Leder report bristol.ac.uk/media-library/… I barely have the stomach to read it. I'm just going to highlight coroners and inquests.

Only 37% of learning disabled people lived beyond the age of 65 in 2018 (85% of general population did)

1/16
I can't wrap my head around that. 63% of learning disabled people die before their 65th birthday, only 15% of non-learning disabled people do.

My gut suggests many more deaths of learning disabled people should therefore be reported to the coroner... that's logical right? 2/
'Of the 1,946 deaths of adults with learning disabilities for which a review was completed in 2019, 32% were known to have been reported to a coroner, a substantially smaller proportion than the 41% of adults and children in the general population who died in 2018' 3/
Read 16 tweets
Anybody whose eyes have been opened by the abuse levelled at #JKRowling and is wondering about the "terrible transphobe" she defended

Here are the things I tweeted back in 2018 which led to me losing my job.

First there was this on the GRA consultation
Then there was this

Which led to a whole series of branching conversations with fellow development researchers on the nature of sex & gender
In which I expressed such opinions as male people are not women
Read 13 tweets
Visits to mags' courts today. Just arrived at Stratford to be told that tho court is technically open there is no public access. Asked to see the security guard's manager & was told the same story. No access. They said they only had one court running & there was no list available
Having travelled across London to Stratford mags not best pleased. Mags court lists not available to public & no digital public gallery so no alternative to turning up #openjustice #onlinecourts
New court. Admitted no problem. 1st case. Interpreter in police custody with defendant. Interpreter not fully in view...seems to be having to lean over def. Prosecutor has no access to online files. DA case trial set for 30th June (!). Bailed on charge of assault.
Read 21 tweets
I'm dialled into Westminster Magistrates' Court today to see if it's even possible to report from a magistrates' court remotely.

Court admin staff now very helpful and aware that reporters can dial into cases, they gave out the number as soon as our request was heard.
It's very difficult to hear what's going on.

The phone is beside the legal advisor who comes through very clearly. Judge is less clear (even though he is projecting his voice).

The defendant's voice was very unclear, I couldn't hear a word from the one who appeared so far.
If a lawyer speaks I have to guess whether it's the prosecutor or defence. I guess I'm going to have to ask the legal advisor later if they are accommodating or call the court admin staff back and hope they have enough time to help me with names of lawyers.
Read 21 tweets
With huge thanks to everyone who contributed yesterday, in advance of the #Coronavirus Bill due to be published today please read this briefing on implications of proposals for the courts on access to justice and Rule of Law
bit.ly/2U5r1pb @AdamWagner1 @CommonsJustice
This briefing sets out 8 practical recommendations to ensure that access to justice and the Rule of Law is upheld in the context of the rapid expansion of the use of remote hearings across the justice system. @neill_bob @davidallengreen @jasimsoncaird @bricksilk
1. Non-urgent trials should be delayed, and existing exceptions relating to the use of video hearings set
out in CPD must be applied. Individuals who are neurodiverse, have a learning disability or are experiencing mental ill health should be excluded from trial by video hearing.
Read 11 tweets
At my tribunal the Judge welcomed live tweeting as a means of #openjustice . It was brilliantly done by @wwwritingclub. Someone didn't like something she reported and complained to @Twitter. Her account was suspended for 12 hrs. She wasn't able to live tweet from #FairCopJR
Someone also did not like that the women of Mumsnet were talking openly about the case and the individuals involved. They received ominous warnings about "reporting restrictions" and decided to take all the names out if the posts to be on the safe side mumsnet.com/Talk/womens_ri…
After clarification that there were no reporting restrictions they have promised to replace all the names.
Read 7 tweets
Welcome back! The final session of the case against Boris Johnson closing down Parliament is starting at the Supreme Court. Lord Keen, the government's top law man in Scotland, begins his reply to the week's legal argument.
Lord Keen says that the entire case against the government is, quite simply, wrong because prorogation of Parliament is a political rather than legal issue.
Lord Keen: "What this court is being invited to do is control the length of the prorogation of Parliament... The length of each session of Parliament and their frequency are regulated by constitutional convention - not the law."
Read 27 tweets
And we've started. First up, James Woolfe QC. He's the Scottish government's Lord Advocate - that's its top legal adviser. He's got 30 minutes to make an intervention on its behalf.
Typo. James Wolffe QC, with a double f. Apols.
Mr Wolffe is arguing that the court needs to "calibrate" its approach to holding ministers to account in relation to the importance of the issue before them. The more serious the issue, the more important it is that courts looks into it.
Read 15 tweets
Sir James Eadie QC has finished his submissions for the Prime Minister in defence of the case brought by Gina Miller. Lord David Pannick QC now has the right to reply.
In summary, David Pannick says he’s asking the court to declare that the proroguement of five weeks, in the specific context of current events, is an abuse of power because it breaches Parliamentary sovereignty at a moment when “time is of the essence” over Brexit.
If the PM loses, he would then be required to retake his decision over the duration of a prorogation and take into account what the judges say abiout Parliamentary sovereignty. Pannick is not asking the judges to set out how long a prorogation should be.
Read 7 tweets
1.) Available data shows that Lagos State High Court treated over 6163 cases in January, 2019; while 1848 were civil, 1264 were criminal. The State judiciary only have 51 Judges #OpenJustice Thread Image
2.) In February, 2019 there was an increase in the cases treated at the High Court of Lagos from 6163 in January to 6670 cases in February, 2019 with substantial increase in both Civil and Criminal cases. @InnoJustice @Mullersam #OpenJustice #CourtCongestion Image
Most of these Courts take proceedings in long hand, hence, a slow trial time and slow pace of justice delivery. For example, on Monday 11th February, 2019, one of the Court had 52 cases; a regular phenomenon in Lagos State High Courts. #Data4Change #Data4Justice
Read 5 tweets
David Beckham is being dealt with tomorrow for driving while on the phone under the Single Justice Procedure - behind closed doors & under a blanket of secrecy. It's a system @HMCTSgovuk and @MoJGovUK want to roll out more widely, but is an affront to #OpenJustice at the moment:
Beckham's case does not appear on the court list issued to journalists in advance. So presumably all other SJP cases are also not listed. We have long since stopped receiving the outcomes of SJP cases from courts in London.
At best we can find out whether Beckham pleads guilty, and if he does, his punishment. But unlike all other court cases where there's an actual hearing, we'll never know the circumstances of the offence, mitigation offered by the defendant, and why the punishment was reached.
Read 9 tweets

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