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NEWS

Short Update: English judge orders release of suspect due to trial delay

FairTrialsAdmin - August 5, 2020 - COVID-19 Updates, Extended pre-trial detention, Delayed or accelerated proceedings

A judge in London ordered a suspect be released from prison because a lack of courtrooms means that he will not face trial until next year. 

The suspect had been in custody since his arrest in December. His trial had been due to start in May, but the COVID-19 lockdown halted all jury trials in March. The judge refused a third extension to his custody stating that the lack of available courts was not a good enough reason to extend the custody time limit. The judge criticized the lack of investment to create enough additional courts meaning that many defendants will not be tried until well into 2021.

The ruling could affect thousands of defendants in custody, as the backlog of crown court cases has risen to more than 41,000 and a shortage of courts has caused delays of up to three years. 

We publish information as it is reported to us. If you would like to make us aware of an inaccuracy or send us more information please email us at [email protected].  

If you are a journalist interested in this story, please telephone Fair Trials’ press department on +44 (0) 20 7822 2370 or +32 (0) 2 360 04 71.

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