Where a defendant pleads ‘Not Guilty’ to one or more offences with which that person is charged and the prosecution falls to be tried in the Crown Court, the Hearing will be conducted before a Jury.
Nazaqat Maqsoom of Kangs Solicitors outlines the selection process, function and role of a jury within the Trial Process.
Selection Process | Kangs Criminal Trial Specialists
- Anyone over the age of eighteen may be called for jury service, subject to a number of exceptions including those who are on bail, have been convicted by a court in the UK, Channel Islands or the Isle of Man and sentenced to five years or more in prison or are ineligible for reasons relating to work currently or previously carried out.
- A jury summons will be issued about ten days before the date requiring attendance at court and any recipient who is unable to attend upon that date is required to inform the court immediately.
There is the possibility that a fine may be issued for:
- failing to reply to the summons,
- failing to attend for jury service,
- being unavailable to attend as a juror when called,
- being unfit to act as a juror through use of drink or drugs.
- On the appointed day, a process known as ‘Jury Selection’ will be conducted from those in attendance for each trial at that court where a jury is required.
- A Jury ordinarily compromises of twelve jurors although, particularly in lengthy cases, it does happen that through accident or illness that number may reduce and the trial allowed to continue, subject to strict guidelines. If the case is anticipated to be very complex or lengthy, as a precaution, extra jurors may be selected to ensure that a full panel will remain despite any withdrawals.
- It is possible for an objection to be raised at this stage against any proposed Juror because, for example, the defendant knows the Juror or believes that the presence of that person may be unfairly prejudicial.
The Role of the Jury | Kangs Criminal Defence Team
- The Jury is charged with the responsibility of deciding whether, on the facts of the case, a person is guilty or not guilty of the offence(s) for which he or she has been charged.
- The Jury must reach its verdict upon a consideration of only the evidence put to the court by the Prosecution and the directions of the Judge.
- At all times, members of the Jury are entitled to take written notes and may pass these to the foreman of the jury, who may be a woman, to direct to the Judge requesting any explanations that may be required.
- At appropriate times, the Judge may remind the Jurors of the importance of their role and various restrictions imposed upon them throughout the course of a trial.
- Once all of the evidence has been heard, the Trial will be summarised by the Judge who will then ask the Jury to retire and consider its verdict.
- In order to assist deliberation, the jurors are handed an ‘issue paper’ setting out the issues to be considered in reaching their verdict.
- Once the jury has reached its decision, it will return to the court and the foreman will read out the verdict.
- In the case of a ‘Guilty’ decision, the jury has no role in sentencing which is the responsibility of the Judge.
How Can We Help You? | Kangs National Criminal Trial Defence Solicitors
Kangs Solicitors is instructed on a daily basis to defend clients who are under investigation or charged with criminal offences of every nature. We represent clients who are being tried before Crown Courts throughout the country on a daily basis.
Our team has a proven track record of assisting clients charged with all manner of alleged criminal conduct achieve the best possible outcome.
Who Can I Contact For Help? | Kangs Criminal Law Defence Experts
Our team can be contacted through any of following: