Who guards the guards?

“I really did feel sorry for the juror who was jailed for sharing her research with the rest of the jury,” said TheVamp today.

“But what else can we do if we’re to ensure fair trials?” said BusyBody.

“I know,” said TheVamp. “I get the point. I guess my only gripe is that it seems like one law for the masses and another for judges.”

“What do you mean?” said HeadofChambers. “I hope you’re not insinuating that they go around doing such practices.”

“To be fair, I think a few might even struggle to find the internet,” said TheBusker.

“It’s not that,” said TheVamp. “But we all know that judges chat about their cases or even if they’re being careful some still like hearing about the, er, wider context.”

“And where are you suggesting that this dangerous talk takes place?” said HeadofChambers, still in denial.

“Oh come on,” said BusyBody. “Dinners in the Inn. Drinks receptions, friends’ houses…”

“And that’s not forgetting judges chatting away online or in conference with each other,” said Teflon. “I clearly remember one judge once telling me, and I might say with extreme prejudice, that he knew all about the particular type of case before him due to just such chit-chat on the judicial networking facility, then called Felix.”

“So what did you do about it?” asked TheCreep.

“Well, I thought about judicial review but do you really think a client’s going to fund a full-scale attack on the propriety of the judiciary when that same client is conducting litigation all around the country?”

“Then of course you have the judicial lunch, at which do you really think they sit around not even whispering anything about their cases?” said TheVamp.

“After thirty years of chewing over the cud of their cases with their fellow barristers before they reached such high office,” said BusyBody.

“Well, they’re human like the rest of us,” said HeadofChambers. “We just need to have faith that they’re skilled enough to disregard idle chatter.”

“Ah, the judicial, indeed the Nelsonian, blind eye,” said TheVamp.

“Well whenever I judge,” said OldSmoothie, “I always insist that the court clerk tells me every bit of gossip the two barristers have been sharing about the case outside of court and as for finding damaging material online, I always get my kids to do that for me.”

“Ah, who guards the guards,” said OldRuin. “It will forever be the question.”

BabyBarista is a fictional account of a junior barrister written by Tim Kevan whose new novel is Law and Peace. For more information and to read past posts visit babybarista.com. Cartoons by Alex Williams, author of 101 Ways to Leave the Law.

January 25, 2012 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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