Sunday, August 15, 2010

Fletch Your Juror Information

I never knew this, but according to tonight's One News, if you're serving on a jury, the accused has access to your name, occupation, and address; and until 2008, the accused was allowed to take that list away with them (though not anymore; they're only allowed to look at it under supervision now). This was exposed when accused  George Baker wrote a letter to a juror who it looks like he fancied.

It's alleged Baker contacted a woman juror after getting her details from jurors' list, exposing a loophole in the system.
Under the law, the accused can view a list of jurors' names. People representing themselves get to see the list in more detail. Halfway through the trial the juror contacted police after a letter signed by Baker was sent to her home. [...] ONE News understands the letter wasn't intimidating, but in it Baker introduces himself and makes romantic overtures to the married, middle-aged woman

I have to ask - why? Why aren't the names, addresses, and occupations or jurors kept totally away from accused? Isn't there a fear that if a felon gets sent down, or punished in some other way that he may retaliate at some later stage? Is this how it works overseas?

There is a severe shortage of common-sense in this country...

1 comment(s):

Anonymous said...

Because an accused person has the right to know who will sit in judgement on them.

Because the defence (and prosecution) need to know in advance of the trial if there are are potential jurors known to the defendant(s), the accuser(s), the witnesses and indeed the lawyers and judge.

generally, this is done via counsel, but as this case the accused chose to represent himself, he was given the information. This is not a usual case, and the error was made in allowing the accused to keep the list, rather than just viewing it.

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