The Law Society have published a report which sets out various problems within the criminal justice system and proposes 11 recommendations for change.
The recommendations are wide ranging and include the following:
- There should be a central register of all release under investigation (RUI) cases and any that are still open four months from initial release should be brought to court and the delay explained.
- Expert lawyers should be suitably remunerated to ensure that those with knowledge and experience of working with young people are retained in the system and new practitioners are attracted to work in this important area of law. For example, we believe there should be an enhanced payment for youth work compared with the same case in the adult courts. We also recommend that the Ministry of Justice consider a target deadline for youth cases to be heard.
The recommendation that remuneration for youth justice specialist lawyers should include an uplift is welcomed. The preparation of a cases involving a child defendants takes longer and requires different skills to a similar case with an adult defendant.