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Sam Hallam is freed

Thursday, May 17, 2012

After seven years in jail for a crime he did not commit, Sam Hallam was released on bail today. This case shows that miscarriages of justice are still with us, and highlights the role of the Criminal Cases Review Commission. It appears that photos on Mr Hallam’s mobile phone may have shown the jury that the alibi that he relied on was not “a concoction”.

It is also interesting to note that Mr Hallam’s exercising of the right to silence during his interview may not have helped matters.Of course, following the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 it is now possible for the jury to draw adverese inferences from this that historically it was not.

See below for a video clip. The Sam Hallam campaign website is also full of useful content.

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Civil Courts “face meltdown”

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

...or so says the Gazette - the magazine for solicitors, and not exactly given to hyperbole. Plans to cut face-to-face counter services seem particularly difficult from an access to justice point of view, given the large amount of litigants in person created by the cuts to legal aid, as the Gazette points out.

The Queen’s Speech

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Today the coalition government sets out its legislative agenda for the coming year via the State Opening of Parliament and in particular the Queen’s Speech. The Guardian has a great picture gallery to bring the pageantry to life here. Amongst the potential enactments is reform of the House of Lords, although whether this will become reality is anyone’s guess!

The BBC has a fab Bill-by-Bill rundown here, and Nick Robinson’s behind the scenes video guide is a good resource too.

Sexism at the bar?

Thursday, May 03, 2012

Equality and diversity in the legal profession continues to be a live issue, and a relevant discussion point for AS students. There’s a cracking article on the issue here, and an interesting range of views “below the line” as well!

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