The potential for developing specialist courts dedicated to tackling complex cases, such as domestic abuse, is being examined by the Ministry of Justice (MoJ).
According to The Centre for Justice Innovation, crimes such as domestic and sexual abuse are ‘often complex and require a more sophisticated approach in order to secure prosecutions, protect victims and ensure that justice is done. Domestic abuse victims often find themselves jumping from forum to forum to resolve family, civil and criminal matters that are all facets of the same underlying issue’.
If the specialist courts come into force, the same judge will sit in both criminal and civil aspects of domestic abuse cases to ensure judicial continuity and faster processing of trials.
In the US, where the latest model is being piloted, it has led to increased convictions and witness participation, lower re-offending, more effectiveenforcement of protection orders and reduced case-processing times.
Endorsing the proposal, justice secretary Michael Gove said that he was ‘impressed’ by the potential of problem-solving courts ‘to contribute to crime reduction and personal redemption’ during a recent visit to the US. He further said that he and the Lord Chief Justice have discussed how they can learn from the experience of problem-solving courts in other jurisdictions and they are both keen to look at what more can be done in this area.
The need for specialist courts in UK has been recognised for some-time now, assert Curry Popeck Solicitors. The development of specialist courts would strengthen thejudicial system and would ensure fairness and faster judgement.
The formation of specialist courts aims to modernise the judicial system in the UK and promises to deliver faster justice. Curry Popeck Solicitors welcomes the proposal.
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