Legal Updates

10 September 2018

How best to react to claims of sexual misconduct

THE media storm surrounding former SNP leader Alex Salmond has in many ways been fuelled by his confrontational approach to the sexual misconduct claims raised against him. These allegations came to the public’s attention when he commenced legal proceedings against the Scottish Government about their handling of investigations. Some consider this a smart move, others a political distraction from the underlying claims. It will be interesting to see how his case plays out given his very public profile. 

Kirsty Churm

30 August 2018

The criminal offence of controlling and coercive behaviour: avoiding the potential pitfalls in family proceedings

The criminal offence of Controlling and Coercive behaviour in an intimate and family relationship should be of key significance to family lawyers. Family lawyers know all too well that allegations of harassment and domestic abuse are regularly raised in the context of a relationship breakdown - and instances of Controlling and Coercive behaviour from one partner or spouse towards the other may, once raised, play a significant role in both the divorce and any children proceedings. An allegation of Controlling and Coercive behaviour may give rise to a criminal complaint and an intrusive police investigation. Whether your client has accused their partner of Controlling and Coercive behaviour or is the subject to a police investigation following such an allegation, it is critical to synchronise the criminal and family law advice. This article provides guidance through the tricky and unpredictable process.

Alexandra Bishop

23 August 2018

PACE under review: no excuse for failing to maintain the dignity of those held in custody

On 21 August 2018, the Home Office launched a consultation in respect of further revisions to the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 (PACE) Codes of Practice. While the consultation period is no surprise (it is a statutory requirement), it is breath-taking that such basic standards of decency need to be introduced to the minimum standards of treatment for detained individuals.

Matthew Hardcastle

7 August 2018

Unduly lenient sentences: a numbers game

Yesterday, the Attorney General’s Office issued a press release “More victims and their families get justice.” This is based on an assessment of Unduly Lenient Sentence Referral Scheme overseen by the Attorney General. While the statistics may be headline grabbing, further analysis suggests the system is in need of reform.

Nick Dent

27 July 2018

Disclosure of Evidence in Criminal Cases – time to restore fairness in the criminal justice system

On 20 July 2018, the House of Commons Justice Committee released their report on the Disclosure of Evidence in Criminal CasesMatthew Hardcastle, an Associate in our Criminal Litigation team, acted as a specialist advisor to the Committee during this inquiry.

Sandra Paul

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