The Magistrate's Blog (2005-2012)

This blog has migrated to www.magistratesblog.blogspot.co.uk This blog is anonymous, and Bystander's views are his and his alone. Where his views differ from the letter of the law, he will enforce the letter of the law because that is what he has sworn to do. If you think that you can identify a particular case from one of the posts you are wrong. Enough facts are changed to preserve the truth of the tale but to disguise its exact source.

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Location: Near London, United Kingdom

The blog is written by a retired JP, with over 30 years' experience on the Bench.

Friday, October 31, 2008

No Show

This morning's scheduled trial didn't happen, because the defendant was in prison. On another matter. 250 miles away in the North of England. Nobody had arranged for him to be brought to court. Brilliant. The lawyers and the witnesses trudged away.
After wasting a couple of hours we dealt with a bit of business from another courtroom. It was freezing, as the heating in our courtroom doesn't work, and the only man who knew how to coax it into life has been paid off on early retirement as part of the cuts. There was a crappy little fan heater in the well of the court, but it wasn't working. When the usher found another, and pulled out the plug of the first one, the plug crumbled to pieces in her hand. The replacement had no discernible effect on the temperature.
By lunchtime all but two courts had packed up and gone home as they had nothing to do. We were left with a matter scheduled for 2 pm. We started it at 3.45, and finished late. Not, on the whole, a brilliant day.