23 Mar 2009

who are they attacking now ?

The legal system has come under a lot of attacks in the last week, and yet I cannot find anything that justifies these articles.

Take for example this article, http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/7958322.stm, debating the usefulness of juries in the English legal system. I caught a bit of the debate on this this morning on Radio Four and wondered what had triggered the discussion. Radio Four made sweeping statements along the lines of "juries are failing to find justice in the UK" and "with more hung juries than ever, should we abolish juries?".

Now I don't consider myself a particularly strong in numeracy, but even I can see that 59 juries a year being undecided so got to be less than 5% of all juries in the year. I don't know how many courts sit juries in the country (and I have to get to work, so I don't have time to look them up), but I'm well aware that most courts have at least four courts a day. Let's estimate there are a thousand Crown Courts alone in the country, that means there are four thousand juries a day. Not even taking into account the amount of cases that are heard in less than a day and that often someone on jury service will hear more than 20 cases in three weeks stint, how does 59 hung juries a year even justify a trainee journalist article in a local newspaper, let alone extensive discussions and articles all over the web?

Am I missing something? what is the real purpose in this article?

Are we being subconsciously swayed towards reviewing the legal system and changing it to something different?

Alternatively, perhaps it is not even this nefarious, and is literally that there is nothing going on worth reporting on at the moment!

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