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.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

No Delay

We had finished our morning's work when a casually dressed man panted into the courtroom and spoke to the clerk sotto voce. We were asked to deal with the matter straight away and of course we agreed. The officer (for such it was) apologised unnecessarily for his informal appearance, took the oath, and handed up his Information.

It was an application for a search warrant that he described as "very urgent". I cannot say anything about it, but I expect that shortly after I signed the warrant a squad of serious policemen went to visit a place in our locality that is known for problems.

These days we have been advised that warrant applications, even if made in open court before a bench, are a matter for a single justice; previously we have looked upon it as a Bench decision, although a single justice has of course the power to grant it.

So it was my turn, and I signed the warrant with my special (illegible) Warrant signature. Well you never know, do you?