International Cliche day – a game changing paradigm evidence based shift – and a quick look at the law blogs

Juror prosecuted for contempt in Facebook case is ‘distraught’

The Telegraph: The first juror ever to face prosecution for contempt of court involving the internet was ”distraught” today as she came before the Lord Chief Justice. The Telegraph notes that she had formally admitted contempt of court.

Adam Wagner at the UK Human Rights blog commented on the case yesterday and reminded readers of the need for bloggers and tweeters to be particularly careful to avoid prejudicing a fair trial.   Adam Wagner noted : “According to The Telegraph, the Lord Chief Justice Lord Judge is expected to issue “tough new” guidelines on internet use by jurors. That sounds sensible to protect the trial system, but also from the jurors’ perspective it is important that the rules are clear and unambiguous. That said, some jurors may still choose to ignore them. After all, the judge in this case gave a warning not to use the internet to research the trial.”

The trial against a juror continues.  Obiter J picked up a press report which underlines the importance of contempt proceedings:  “The Times on 13th June claimed to have found 40 examples of public postings and statements from jurors.  These included a juror (trying a case of sexual assault) who used Facebook to ask her friends for advice about the verdict.  She was removed from the jury.  Other comments could be interpreted as a bias against the defence – e.g. one juror is said to have posted – “stuck in jury duty haha … Defo Guilty.”

The UK Human Rights blog continues to develop and the latest resource is an excellent  UK Human Rights Blog case table

Obiter J continues with his interesting series on English Legal History: Explaining our Law and Legal System … No.3 … The Judges

John Bolch of Family Lore writes: @familylaw: Two thousand followers can’t be wrong… –  “Family Lore Focus is essentially a site that aggregates freely available family law content from the web, including news, cases, statutory instruments, articles, podcasts and blogs.”  A useful resource for those in the family law world.

Tim Bratton, GC of The FT and author of The Legalbratlawblog has an interesting post: The case for self-regulation of social media

The Bizzle has a most amusing post this week:  How aliens can help you write off your debts. I enjoyed reading this… but a word of warning… there are lizards who think they run the world.

Informm’s blog: News: Joshua Rozenberg Interviews Mr Justice Eady

Here’s something you won’t believe from Neil Rose at Legal Futures: “Complaints are a law firm’s best source of market intelligence. I’ve heard this said countless times in recent years, previously by the Legal Complaints Service and its many forebears, and now by the Legal Services Board (LSB). “Many lawyers are missing the chance to learn from substantial numbers of consumers who make a complaint,” said LSB chief executive Chris Kenny last week. It may well be true. But hardly any lawyer believes it…..”

David Allen Green, writing in the New Statesman has a very sharp and precise article on an extraordinary arrest.  Police buffoonery, incompetence or all three?  I asked on twitter yesterday.  Judge for yourselves. 

And the legal profession just keeps giving… or, in this case, taking.

Scandal in the City as string of top lawyers face financial investigation

Alex Aldridge in The Guardian: Does the sacking of Christopher Grierson over £1m in false expenses reflect a wider moral malaise among City lawyers?

No one knew Grierson, 59, was also busy amassing a total of £1m in false expenses, pocketing an annual £250,000 over a four year period.He did so mainly by booking flights on his credit card and claiming the value back from the firm – although they were subsequently cancelled.

Apparently, Grierson was earning £830,00 per annum.  He need an extra £250,000 pa,  it would seem. When caught, he was able to pay £1 million back.  I marvel at the sheer stupidity and greed. Apparently there are more  solicitors in The City awaiting investigation.

I enjoyed an amusing ten minutes or so this morning exchanging cliches with fellow tweeters.  The latest cliche – The direction of travel – which I am almost certain our prime minister Camcorderdirect is responsible for, started me off.  But I was not alone.  I was advised that John Rentoul of The Independent  had written an excellent piece on the topic of cliches – adding ‘evidence based’ to his list of bêtes noires – and ‘was on the case': One man’s war on clichés (does what it says on the tin)

3 thoughts on “International Cliche day – a game changing paradigm evidence based shift – and a quick look at the law blogs

  1. Many thanks for the mentions above. I am most grateful.

    This “trial” in the High Court is interesting. I have come to wonder whether this trial is something of a “show trial” aimed at making an example of Fraill who, with no disrespect, seems somewhat naive and perhaps inadequate.

    The present Lord Chief Justice is on record as indicating his strong views as to what should happen to jurors who commit contempt – see his speech in Northern Ireland November 2010.

    http://www.judiciary.gov.uk/NR/rdonlyres/CBB8FE3E-ACEB-49EE-B004-A0AAD2AAC3F8/0/speechlcjjurytrialsjsblecturebelfast.pdf

    Clearly, the LCJ is keen to “send out” a strong message about juror misconduct. Also, I have no doubt that, as a supporter of the jury system, he is doing this with the best of motives. However, is he the right person to preside over this case? In the very much lower ranks of the judiciary it would be thought that preconceived views might be influencing the decisions the court has to make. Even if there are no actual preconceived views, there is, I submit, the appearance of them.

    A further point relates to the LCJ taking what is a “trial” – albeit one not before a jury. I do not doubt his entitlement to do so but question its wisdom. There could be an appeal and who will hear it? Obviously, the Court of Appeal would hear it but when the appeal is against a decision of a court chaired by the LCJ there is the potential for the observer of the system to question the fairness of the process.

  2. “Complaints are a law firm’s best source of market intelligence”

    Tis true, just as failed planning applications are the best source of leads for Planning Consultants…

  3. Charon, re. Grierson: you “marvel at the sheer stupidity…” This kind of stupidity is standard for criminals, isn’t it? At least, for the ones who get caught. And why expect lawyers to be different?

    Oh, I see. You mean his firm was stupid. Not noticing embezzlement on this scale for 4 years.

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