law pages of Bournemouth and Poole College.
Lord Justice of Appeal, Sir Stephen Richards last week sat in the Divisional Court of the High Court where he presided over the appeal into the death of Jean Charles de Menezes, the Brazilian shot dead at Stockwell tube station on 22 July 2005 by police officers who mistook him for a terror suspect.
Following a ruling in the Divisional Court the family can now ask the House of Lords to consider the case. Direct appeals from the High Court to the House of Lords bypass the Court of Appeal a process known as the “Leapfrog Procedure“.
Sir Stephen is the subject of an enquiry by British Transport Police into an incident that allegedly took place on a train in the London area last year; a commuter made a complaint to police that a man had exposed himself to her.
We told you in September that judges would stop wearing wigs in civil cases; it appears that Lord Phillips the Lord Chief Justice told the judges on 12 January. It would follow that barristers would do likewise. This change will occur on 1 October 2007.
Magistrates in Wales stopped Michael Rees from using 1p pieces to pay his fine of ï¿½650 for careless driving. After receiving 54,000 1p pieces, the court refused to accept any more, quoting the Coinage Act 1971, which states that bronze coins do not have to be accepted in settlement for debts of more than 20p.
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It is well reported that 2007 is going to be the year of no smoking, the age for buying tobacco will increase to 18 and smoking in some public places will be banned. Smoking on hospital premises (outside wards with open windows) will also be prohibited.
Other less well reported changes include changes to bail conditions, as from today – 1 January 2007 – the bail provisions in Sec 14 and 15 of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 take effect. They are only for offences that carry a life sentence and are committed after today.
A defendant 18 and over may not be granted bail unless the court is satisfied that he will not commit an offence while on bail, if he committed the alleged offence whilst already on bail. Also, he will not get bail if he has failed to appear in court on a previous occasions.
But for those under 18 the rules are softer, so failing to appear becomes failing to appear and not doing so as soon as possible after. This only applies to bail from the court, not police bail.