Best legal system in the world? - yeah right!

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Best legal system in the world? - yeah right!

Postby Tom B » Sun Dec 08, 2013 4:03 pm

Jury duty - what a stupid impractical system we have in Scotland - get 30 people to take a week off work (or at least a day) in the expectation that up to 15 of them might be needed to be on the jury - surely there's a better way?
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Re: Best legal system in the world? - yeah right!

Postby bill » Sun Dec 08, 2013 7:23 pm

And do you have any suggestions that would improve the situation ?
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Re: Best legal system in the world? - yeah right!

Postby LANDROVER ROGER » Sun Dec 08, 2013 7:27 pm

This has worked for years and years.Why change it?
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Re: Best legal system in the world? - yeah right!

Postby gizmo » Sun Dec 08, 2013 8:46 pm

LANDROVER ROGER wrote:This has worked for years and years.Why change it?


This is the attitude that has made Britain the country it has become. :<>
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Re: Best legal system in the world? - yeah right!

Postby Tom B » Sun Dec 08, 2013 9:12 pm

Quote from Henny Macaskill

"Of the 150,000 individuals who are cited for jury service each year, only around 10% of these are selected by ballot to serve on a jury"

That is ludicrous and a complete waste - what total inefficiency - hours and hours wasted by tens of thousands of people because "we've always done it that way" "

I'd start by reducing the number of jurors from 15 to 12 - a 20% saving straight away - and puts us in line with E&W and elsewhere. Who knows maybe it could be reduced further too.

Also I'd make it so if you get called and you have to take a week off work to turn up at court on a Monday, then that means you're on the jury - you get the gig - and one of the lawyers can't decide they don't want you on the jury (for whatever reason) - if it's a random selection then make it random. That would at least half the number of people required again.

If random selection doesn't work, then lets acknowledge that and let's appoint a semi permanent professional jury who would work as a juror for a month or a year or whatever. Millions more £ saved there, and no reason why justice couldn't still be served
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Re: Best legal system in the world? - yeah right!

Postby Tom B » Sun Dec 08, 2013 9:22 pm

Also I was called as a witness in a civil trial and was told to "block out 3 weeks" in my diary (!), and the citation letter said there would be a warrant issued for my arrest if I didn't show up! I did show up and after much posturing the two sides settled the case by lunchtime on the first day, after I had been hanging around in the witness waiting room all morning. It's all part of the game, and so antiquated and so stuck in the past and so needs to change. No apology, no explanation.
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Re: Best legal system in the world? - yeah right!

Postby Shona » Mon Dec 09, 2013 9:41 am

Reducing the size of the jury from 15 to 12 won't work in Scotland because of the requirement for a simple majority - you'd need an odd number.

In England and Wales, a majority is 10 out of 12 (and no option for 'unproven'). If there is no majority in England and Wales, a retrial is common. Research papers have shown that smaller the jury size, the less likely it is that they will reach a verdict.

I've been a juror several times. Apart from the first morning, when the jury was being chosen, all my time was spent in the courtroom. Found it fascinating.

What I would change, however, are the hours. Get the very well paid legal tribe to work longer hours and thus reduce the number of days jurors have to be there.

I did wonder if the legal folk were trained to speak very, very, s-l-o-w-l-y (are they paid by the hour?). If the spoke normally, trials would take half the time.
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Re: Best legal system in the world? - yeah right!

Postby Tom B » Mon Dec 16, 2013 5:42 pm

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Re: Best legal system in the world? - yeah right!

Postby petewick » Tue Dec 17, 2013 11:04 am

I got picked for jury duty years ago......the whole trial became farcical........
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Re: Best legal system in the world? - yeah right!

Postby gizmo » Tue Dec 17, 2013 6:12 pm

I was called for jury service 3 or 4 years ago. Day 1 was very interesting as the processes were explained to us. I had to make myself available for 2 weeks, only being told at the end of each day whether or not I would be needed the next day, as the defendants often changed their plea to guilty at the last possible minute. This made arranging my work pretty difficult.
I was called to serve on the last day of my 2 week stint to sit on what was a serious case that was expected to last at least 2 weeks, luckily I wasnt selected, I think the solicitor had spotted me reading the Mail in the ante room.
Quite sure the bugger was guilty, he had a shifty look and wore a pony tail.
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