Category: News

Ben Douglas-Jones in Landmark decision – Open Justice

Ben Douglas-Jones appeared for the DPP in a landmark decision of the Administrative Court (Divisional) Court concerning the scope of open justice.  In Ewing v Cardiff and Newport Crown Court v DPP [2016] EWHC 183 (Admin) the Divisional Court (Burnett LJ and Sweeney J) ruled that open justice includes the right of members of the public in the public gallery to take notes.  This is a right which may be restricted if necessary to protect the administration of justice.    … Read More

Congratulations to District Judge Bethan Japheth

Linenhall Chambers are delighted to announce that The Queen has appointed Bethan Japheth to be a District Judge on the advice of the Lord Chancellor, the Right Honourable Michael Gove MP and the Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales, the Right Honourable The Lord Thomas of Cwmgiedd. The Lord Chief Justice has deployed her to the Wales Circuit, based at Wrexham. Bethan has been a member of Linenhall Chambers since 1998 when she successfully completed her pupillage with us. We wish her the very best with her new appointment.     … Read More

His Honour Judge Elgan Edwards

The members of Linenhall Chambers are deeply saddened to have learnt of the untimely death of His Honour Judge Elgan Edwards. Called to the Bar in 1967 Elgan Edwards was a former member, and head, of Sedan House Chambers (now Linenhall Chambers). For over the last quarter century Elgan Edwards has been the towering figure in Chester’s legal community. Previously he was a formidable advocate at the Bar, but will probably be remembered by most as a Judge of the Wales and Chester Circuit and then Recorder of Chester. He came to symbolise the administration of criminal justice in this City in a way in which no future lawyer or judge will be able to emulate. However, his influence and esteem stretched far beyond the City walls. He was universally highly regarded in his profession outside Cheshire and by those many people who met him through his tireless … Read More

Barnardo’s – Family Law Christmas Lecture

Thank you to all solicitors and members of Chambers for providing and supporting a fantastic day of seminars on Family Law at Bodysgallen Hall. Donations were made to Barnardo’s Children Charity. … Read More

Macmillan Cancer Support – Charity Bake Day

A big thank you to all solicitors, clients and members of Chambers who baked and bought cakes and biscuits to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Charity. A great and worthy cause. Donations can still be made to Macmillan Cancer Support direct. … Read More

Construction worker falls to his death – Manslaughter by Gross Negligence

R v Allan Thompson and Michael Smith   Matthew Corbett-Jones (led by Andrew Thomas QC) successfully prosecuted a case of manslaughter by gross negligence following the death of a construction worker who fell from the roof of a disused Carpet Right warehouse which he was dismantling in Stockport. The defendant Allan Thompson (who is the director of Building and Dismantling Contractors Ltd from Falkirk in Scotland) failed to provide any method statement or risk assessment leading to failures in health and safety procedures which resulted in the death of Scott Harrower. Michael Smith (Director of C Smith & Sons (Rochdale) Ltd) was also on trial for offences involving breaches of health and safety legislation for which the prosecution successfully alleged he was personally liable. The Trial proceeded at Manchester Crown Court before Mr Justice Turner, defended by Andrew Lloyd-Eley QC and Miss Kate Blackwell QC. Read More

Conviction secured in prosthetic penis trial

R v Gayle Newland   Matthew Corbett-Jones has secured convictions for offences of sexual assault by penetration in what was described as an ‘exceptional’ and ‘extraordinary’ case. For more than two years Gayle Newland posed as a man in order to deceive her female best friend to engage in a relationship during which the defendant had sex with her using a prosthetic penis without the knowledge and therefore consent of the complainant. The case was tried at Chester Crown Court and was defended by Mr Nigel Power QC. … Read More

Specialist Paediatric Registrar and Staff Nurse guilty of gross negligence manslaughter

R v Bawa-Garba and Amaro   Matthew Corbett-Jones (led by Andrew Thomas QC) secured convictions against a Specialist Paediatric Registrar and Staff Nurse for the gross negligence manslaughter of a 6-year-old boy. Jack Adcock suffered with Down Syndrome and was admitted to the Children’s Assessment Unit at the Leicester Royal Infirmary in February 2011. Gross negligence in Jack’s treatment including a failure to diagnose sepsis secondary to pneumonia led to his death following a cardiac arrest. The case was tried at Nottingham Crown Court before Mr Justice Nicol and defended by Ms Zoe Johnson QC and Mr Paul Greaney QC. … Read More

BD-J in landmark Administrative Court case re self-incrimination in murder.

The attached judgment concerns the Administrative Court’s (Bean LJ and Hickinbottom J) granting of the Prosecution’s claim for the judicial review of a decision of a District Judge (Magistrates’ Court) to refuse to allow a witness to a murder to be deposed on the ground that to do so would infringe her privilege against self-incrimination. It has been subject to reporting restrictions until now. They were lifted following verdicts at the end of July. It is a key decision on depositions, which are increasingly important in murder trials. It includes important dicta relating to: (1) the law concerning self-incrimination (see paragraphs 7-10): (a) a witness must be sworn before she can claim self-incrimination “on her oath” and (b) the protection of the privilege against self-incrimination cannot be invoked where to answer the questions would not create a material increase in the risk of incrimination of the … Read More

BD-J in important decision before the Lord Chief Justice concerning erroneous advice given by duty solicitors and advocates in the Crown Court.

Legal representatives whose erroneous advice causes them to plead guilty and later gives rise to successful appeals against conviction should be referred to their professional bodies. In an important judgment, Lord Thomas of Cwmgiedd the Lord Chief Justice upbraided a duty solicitor and a solicitor advocate for failing to explain the parameters of the asylum defence to an asylum seeker facing a qualifying offence. In R v Shabani (Court of Appeal, July, 23 2015) the Lord Chief Justice, Nichol and Stuart Smith JJ referred the duty solicitor and the solicitor advocate who represented an asylum seeker facing a document offence to the Solicitors’ Regulatory Authority. The duty solicitor had given no advice about the asylum defence. The advocate had outlined the offence but had failed to set out the parameters of the offence. While the advice given by the advocate was better than the advice given by representatives in other … Read More