Thursday, November 03, 2011

Lord Hamilton tells Holyrood £200K salaries for judges are not enough, attacks party litigants for clogging up courts system while praising lawyers

Lord HamiltonScotland’s Lord President, Lord Hamilton feels judges should not be subject to a wage freeze. LORD HAMILTON, Scotland’s Lord President who recently announced he is retiring in the summer of 2012 told the Scottish Parliament’s Justice Committee earlier this week that judges salaries are currently so low (from £128,296 for Sheriffs rising to £214,000 for the Lord President himself) the breadline rates of pay are inhibiting recruitment of what the Lord President described as the “best people” from the legal profession to join the bench.

As if the ‘low pay’ of up to £3,800 a week, the lack of accountability to external regulation, and lack of a register of interests were already making life difficult for judges, Lord Hamilton also rounded on unrepresented party litigants for taking up too much time of judges & courts while praising lawyers for being focussed on the legal issues of cases rather than the realities of the situations party litigants find themselves in, often at the hands of the legal profession, public services or vested interests who are all well represented in the courts and in some of the judiciary’s own personal finances, business dealings & relationships.

The judge’s remarks came at a meeting to discuss the Scottish Government’s latest budget and spending review, where like all other public services, the justice system will be expected to bear some of the large public funding cuts caused by the recession and the UK’s multi billion bailout of the banks. The Lord President went onto tell msps the lack of ‘suitable candidates’ for judicial posts, which Lord Hamilton put down to lack of a decent six figure salary & a gold plated guaranteed pension most of the country and the rest of Europe can now only dream of, has already had an impact on Scotland’s justice system where courts are now functioning with a reduced number of judges, the High Court in Scotland already operating with one judge short.

Please Ma’am, can we have some more (Gasp) : Lord Hamilton says there should be more pay & no wage freeze on judges, who earn up to £200K a year (Click image or HERE to watch video)

Asked whether there are concerns about the small rise of salaries for judges, Lord Hamilton said it does concern the judges at all levels. The Lord President said while salaries are determined at a UK level, the senior salaries review board has done a number of reviews and on each occasion recommended increases in judicial salaries just to keep up with inflation. However, as none of the review’s recommendations on raising judicial salaries have been implemented, Lord Hamilton said judges are in real terms being remunerated significantly less than they were five or seven years ago. Along with the pay freeze is the provision of pension provisions which the UK Parliament is currently considering, raising concerns from the judiciary about their pensions, and in turn, giving rise to problems in attracting the “best people” to judicial posts,.

Lord Hamilton said : “One of the problems that we had last year was that there was a competition. But the board (referring to the Judicial Appointments Board), having interviewed some of these persons, found that none of those who applied were suitable for appointment. So we’ve been in a situation where we have been running one judge short for the last year or so.”

The issue of the wages freeze on the judiciary was covered at length in The Herald newspaper, their report can be read here : Fears judges’ pay freeze deterring top candidates and Diary of Injustice has previously reported on the expenses claims of Scotland’s judiciary after FOI requests saw their full publication, here : Expenses claims of Scotland's Judiciary

I doubt any arguments to increase the already huge salaries of the judiciary will gain much sympathy from the rest of the country in these tough financial times, however now the Lord President has raised the issue, it will be interest to see what happens next … perhaps a small little-publicised judicial salary increase, or perhaps as with politicians, the judges will be allowed to claim a little more, and then a little more again on expenses.

Whatever the outcome, if judges are so poor while being paid so much, it is certainly worth bearing in mind members of the judiciary have currently exempted themselves from any register of financial & non financial interests which most public officials are now expected or even required by law to comply with. A campaign to require the judiciary to declare their financial & non financial interests was started by Diary of Injustice in an earlier article here : JUDGE OUR JUDGES : Petition seeks ‘judicial transparency’, asks Westminster require judiciary to ‘declare all’ to a Register of Interests with a petition to the Scottish Parliament still under discussion with Holyrood officials.

The meeting between the head of Scotland’s judiciary along with the Chief Executive of the Scottish Court Service and the members of the Scottish Parliament’s Justice Committee heard concerns on many other issues such as the reforms proposed by the Lord Justice Clerk Lord Gill’s CIVIL COURTS REVIEW, most of which has not been implemented by the current Scottish Government, who are now engaged on ‘a review of the review’.

Lord Hamilton also managed some barbed attacks against party litigants, expressing his concerns about how the growing numbers of party litigants in Scotland’s courts were apparently taking too much of the judiciary’s time on cases. However readers will by now be well aware the time party litigants take in court could be greatly reduced if the judiciary had reacted more positively towards the issue of lay assistance for party litigants in Scottish courts rather than implementing bans on remunerating lay assistants and discouraging a lay assistant knowledge base & service from forming in Scotland for unrepresented court users.

MSPs question Lord Hamilton over increasing numbers of party litigants in Scotland’s Courts due to lack of legal aid & inability to fund legal representation (Click image or HERE to watch video)

On the subject of party litigants, Christine Grahame MSP, who is serving a second term as the Justice Committee’s Convener, asked the Lord President whether he thought the changes in legal aid & economic circumstances for people there many be more party litigants appearing in Scottish courts.

Lord Hamilton replied there were increasing numbers of party litigants in the courts, and said there is a real risk there will be more people who will not be able to get legal aid and therefore more people who will bring cases but who will have no means obtaining representation for these cases.

More people as party litigants in civil courts also means a problem for the fair despatch of the business itself because, the Lord President claimed : “Whatever people may think about lawyers on the whole lawyers are able to concentrate on what the legal issues are in the litigation and lay people are very often unable to see the wood from the trees the relevant from the irrelevant”.

Lord Hamilton further commented that in many cases with party litigants “there is are a mass of complaints being made” which required more judicial application, time & resources to find the nugget to address the problems.

Christine Grahame asked has anyone costed a case presented by a party litigant with the additional costs to the justice system. Lord Hamilton replied he didn't think so and said it would be a difficult exercise to carry out.

The full forty eight minute session of evidence from Lord Hamilton & Eleanor Emberson to the Scottish Parliament’s Justice Committee can be viewed below :

Lord Hamilton gives evidence to the Scottish Parliament’s Justice Committee on budget cuts in the justice system & more (Click image or HERE to watch video, 48mins)

Clearly little changes in the Scottish justice system, where it could well be argued after watching Tuesday’s Justice Committee meeting, prejudice against party litigants & favouritism for the legal profession & vested interests is still well in play with the judiciary, no matter how many Civil Courts Reviews are undertaken and promises of reform continually made & broken.


Lord Gill Lord Justice ClerkThe Lord Justice Clerk, Lord Gill, author of the Civil Courts Review. The Lord Justice Clerk, Lord Gill, in his speech to the Law Society of Scotland’s 60 year anniversary conference last year, reproduced in full here said : “The civil justice system in Scotland is a Victorian model that had survived by means of periodic piecemeal reforms. But in substance its structure and procedures are those of a century and a half ago. It is failing the litigant and it is failing society. It is essential that we should have a system that has disputes resolved at a judicial level that is appropriate to their degree of importance and that disputes should be dealt with expeditiously and efficiently and without unnecessary or unreasonable cost. That means that the judicial structure should be based on a proper hierarchy of courts and that the procedures should be appropriate to the nature and the importance of the case, in terms of time and cost. Scottish civil justice fails on all of these counts. Its delays are notorious. It costs deter litigants whose claims may be well-founded. Its procedures cause frustration and obstruct rather than facilitate the achievement of justice."

Against the background of Lord Gill’s criticisms of Scotland’s “Victorian” civil justice system, in which some cases continue to be heard by judges some fifteen years after they first entered the court system, the current Scottish Government have a poor track record of responding to the many recommendations contained in Lord Gill’s 2009 Civil Courts Review, as I have previously reported, here : Civil Courts Review one year on : Scotland’s out-of-reach justice system remains Victorian, untrustworthy and still controlled by vested interests & here : Scottish Government’s response to Civil Courts Review : Class Actions, more cases to Sheriff Courts, & faster, easier access to justice ‘over years’.

Readers can download the Civil Courts Review report in pdf format, from the Scottish Courts Website at the following links : Volume 1 Chapter 1 - 9 (Covers McKenzie Friends, procedures, advice etc, 2.99Mb) Volume 2 Chapter 10 - 15 (Covers mainly the issue of Class (multi party) actions etc, 2.16Mb) Synopsis (215Kb)

My coverage of the Civil Courts Review from its publication to the present, and the pace of reforms to civil justice in Scotland can be found here : Civil Courts Review - The story so far


Anonymous said...

As if the ‘low pay’ of up to £3,800 a week, the lack of accountability to external regulation, and lack of a register of interests were already making life difficult for judges


flaming scroungers do they not know the EU just went broke?

Anonymous said...

Interesting.Reading some accounts of this earlier in the week I thought the only topic under discussion was the salary issue.

Anonymous said...

This is exactly why these clowns need to be ousted when you hear what this idiot hamilton has to say. Judges are supposed to have knowledge of the public who they sentence every day and yet they are unbelievably clueless. Hamilton hates party litigants because they are the people who stand up to them after being robbed by their shit bag lawyer. Hamilton still does not get it that it is us who pay their wages and not the scottish parliament. It is their law so let them keep it because the rest of us are moving on. Hamilton you are an ignorant dinosaur.

Anonymous said...

So the reason Scottish justice is so crappy is because the judges dont get paid enough?
I think not!

Vested interests Lord Hamilton and you are already showing your favouritism for the legal profession in your comments!

Its hard to break the habit isn't it Arthur!

Anonymous said...

"....the senior salaries review board has done a number of reviews and on each occasion recommended increases in judicial salaries just to keep up with inflation."

So £214K a year is not enough for that poor dear Lord Hamilton to live on - WHAT PLANET IS HE LIVING ON!

Anonymous said...

True to form the judge speaks lovingly of his colleagues in the legal profession.Good thing this guy is retiring and the sooner the better.

On another note I'd like to say these videos make a real difference to the story.Seeing Hamilton waffling on like that well it clearly demonstrates we are long overdue for judicial reform as well as the lawyers.

Keep up the good work Peter.

Anonymous said...

Well Peter November has started out a very crooked month first there was Alex Salmond running after Scottish lawyers wiping their bums for them in Qatar and now walks along the judges DEMANDING MONEY WITH MENACES!What next?

Anonymous said...

These judges should try living on benefits for a few weeks instead of the 4grand they are getting what a cheek they have asking for more

Anonymous said...

More money for your pals you must be joking Arthur!

Anonymous said...

He could always follow Mr Salmond to the middle east and do some busking/begging there if its a question of money you'll always find Salmond around somewhere hehe

Anonymous said...

What a performance!
The entire clip smacks of a staged debate

Anonymous said...

Clearly they are overpaid at 200K a year etc

Anonymous said...


Truly mind boggling in the arrogant and complete absurdity of his argument.

This man may well be defining the very essence of insanity.

Their argument is, 'you must pay US more because if you don't you will get dodgy judges in and dodgy judges make dodgy decisions because they get paid less their comparators' (very topical - relates directly to Pakistan spot fixing cricketers)

Rebuttal: We all ready have YOU, who already get paid a king's ransom to carry out a function for Society by individuals who require to have and be able to demonstrate uniquely high moral standards and characters above reproach.

Unfortunately, due to falling standards generally, an intolerance by the judiciary shown to Party Litigants and a bias toward Advocates, because of known injustices like the Megrahi 'kangaroo court' trial, a failure to abide by Public Official financial transparency requirements, not to mention the long list of misdemeanors against Sheriffs & Judges and former Lord Advocates to name a few.

You have NO LOCUS WHATSOEVER to ask for a pay rise.

If you had a SHRED of CREDIBILITY left with society you should be concerning yourself with the broken and corrupt Scottish Legal System instead of licking the sweat from our backs.

Until we recognise the only way we will stop the corruption and nepotism is to separate the link between Lawyers and Judges/Sheriffs.

They should not be allowed to be the members of the same gang who make the rules up to serve no one but themselves.

Anonymous said...

I'm sure the Lord President felt he came across pretty well at the hearing however there is a bit of nationalist provocation going on in the questioning which makes me wonder if he saw the questions beforehand.

Its particularly noticeable in the line of questioning over the salaries which are set nationally rather than in Scotland.Could this be yet another attempt by the SNP to blame the ills of the Scottish justice system and its poorly paid judiciary on the London parliament?

Anonymous said...

Why on earth would anyone wish to drag themselves through the courts system as a party litigant when there are law firms across Scotland with trained specialists who will be able to get the job done far quicker and probably at a much reduced cost?

Anonymous said...

This is a great article Peter.

It raises an interesting question though?

Why don't we bring in a rating system for service users to be able to give a performance related feedback for the Judges/Sheriff's employer?

A service user being a non lawyer/advocate or Court worker.

A percentage rating could be given to the Judge/Sheriff for say:

1) Punctuality and using the full allocated court time

2) Their politeness

3) Sarcasm, arrogance, condescendence, rudeness

4) Unreasonableness

5) Refusal without justification or explanation

6) Equitability

7) Unnecessary delay

8) Talking over you

9) Appearing unread about the nature of the case before him/her

10) Making a decision clearly in error and refusing to correct the error despite the damage caused

I have stopped at 10 but could have named a 100.

This would give the judges/sheriff's employer a useful indicator by which to measure their ACTUAL PERFORMANCE BY THE SERVICE USER.

Thereby, the employer could use this TOOL to IDENTIFY the AREAS where the Judges/Sheriff's are LACKING and they can be put on 'Pobation' (get training, counselling etc) until they reach the required standard to be 'FIT' to HOLD such an important role COMMANDING such a HUGE FEE.

In reality then, using Lord Hamilton's own absurd logic the Judges pay should go from say £170,000 p.a down to about £60,000 p.a as an average, notwithstanding that some of the judges out there will be absolutely top-notch

This is a win/win situation.

We get an honest and highly regarded Judiciary (the way it's supposed to be - and the way they keep telling us [lies] it already is) and we get it for cheaper too?

Anonymous said...

To join onto my post a moment ago...Re Lord Hamilton's insinuation that if you do not keep Scottish Judges pay comparable with English Judges/inflation, then you risk getting the 'rong sort' of Judge and consequently the 'wrong decisions' and that this I maintain is directly analagous to the Pakistani 'spot fixing' Criketers, who's barrister claimed the reason they dunit me lord is because they were paid so low (C.£200,000+p.a.) and if they were paid more they would not have 'spot fixed' (cheated).

The fact is that the money is an irrelevance.

The individual in both instances either has got a devious character or has not.

It seems to be a terrible indictment of the Scottish Legal System when the Judicial Appointment Board considered that the recent Scottish Lawyer applicants to become a judge were of a sufficient devious character so as to be unable to fill a position in the whole of Scotland and for Lord Hamilton to use this as a justification for a pay rise!

Quite literally, PRICELESS

Anonymous said...

Outright prejudice against party litigants!

If he had said the same about a religious,racial or same sex minority he would have faced calls to resign - what we learn here is its okay for judges to rubbish litigants in court and heap praise on the lawyers.

We should stop paying for these numpties until they become accountable for their words and actions

Anonymous said...

It is party litigants who provide some lawyers with their daily bread. What a shmuck.

Anonymous said...

Scotland’s Lord President, Lord Hamilton feels judges should not be subject to a wage freeze.

Try £65.00 a week unemployment benefit Lord Asshole. These people are profoundly out of touch with reality.

Anonymous said...

This is just the type of attitude we all experience in court its all about why the hell are we here in the first place interrupting cosy chats and lunches between lawyers and the judges.Really this lot need sacked and proper reform of the justice system.Terrible attitude from people who are supposed to be beyond reproach but it seems not beyond asking for more money!

Anonymous said...

Aye so much for the Civil Courts Review and all that rubbish we were promised by the judges its all been a scam and here we are years later no further forward.

There's a great story in the Daily Record about DIY Justice you should all be reading

Anonymous said...


Did you get a few minutes from ripping off your clients today to spout such rubbish?

Most party litigants end up this way because their thieving scum lawyer has ripped them off or ditched the case because the Law Society or some other creeps in the legal mafia said so.

I know a family who were forced to go through the party litigant mill when their lawyer dropped their case against the hospital that overdosed their eldest son 20 times.The lawyer who took their case gave no reason but it was later found out his bloody wife works as a senior manager at the same hospital and the family were left with no lawyer and couldnt get any after trying 52 different lawyers and the hospital then sued them for legal costs so chew on that scumbag

Anonymous said...

If only the judges were so audible in court - you can hardly hear them mumbling away between the lawyers (obviously on purpose so no one else gets to know what is going on)

What a crooked court system we have why dont people do something about it?

Anonymous said...

I refer to Lord Hamilton's comment about finding nuggets within the party litigants system. Well I was certainly a nugget for turning up twice at the court of session believing I was going to get justice. Yes Lord Hamilton you were right there I was a real nugget and a poor one at that. How about paying these out of touch bastards 10k per anum and introduce them to a performance based bonus scheme, based on doing the right thing for the public who pays their wages. Yours faithfully Mr A Nugget.

Anonymous said...

Yes the video makes a big difference to the story its amazing to see someone in such a position asking for more money while the rest of us are having to eek out an existence on what little we have left!

Anonymous said...

I dont know why these hostile attitudes of the judges towards us are a surprise to anyone,these people in the justice system hate our guts when we show up in court to put the kibosh on their otherwise paper shuffling day.

Anonymous said...

£4,000 a week not enough?They must have some extraordinary living expenses to be able to get through that much!

As well as your idea about the register of interests we should have the full stats on these judges and how they do in cases to justify these huge salaries and all the expenses I imagine they get through as well

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Why on earth would anyone wish to drag themselves through the courts system as a party litigant when there are law firms across Scotland with trained specialists who will be able to get the job done far quicker and probably at a much reduced cost? THOSE TRAINED SPECIALISTS PAY PREMIUMS TO THE INSURERS THE PARTY LITIGANT IS CLAIMING DAMAGES FROM. CLIEANS DONT HAVE LAWYERS, THE LATTER ARE ABUSERS.

Anonymous said...

So just why would it be a difficult exercise to cost a case brought by a party litigant?
Is it difficult because it would show just how much money people are having to spend in their attempts to get a fair hearing while the legal profession rubbish their case before their complicit friends in the judiciary?

Anonymous said...

"This is Earth....EARTH...calling the person who posted on 4 November 2011 11:33".

Please tell me your post is an example of (biting) sarcasm?

Anonymous said...

Let's hope more people who are effectively forced to go down the 'party ;itigant' route as a result of their lawyers being suddenly 'persuaded' that their case has no merit will follow up any adverse decision with an appeal.

Then perhaps, when the system eventually grinds to a complete haly, the miserable excuses we have for politicians will actually do something to end self regulation and the monopoly control exerted by disgraced insurers such as Marsh.

Anonymous said...

Anyone know how party litigants have done if Lord Hamilton has been the judge in their case?

We are sick of Hamilton's prejudice said...

Hamilton is a self regulator used to getting his own way. The tide against self regulation is going global and will continue to expose these twits for the corrupt faction they are.

As for party litigants clogging the courts, this idiots head is closed to the reality that clients have had enough of lawyer corruption and mendacity. Perhaps Hamilton should receive performance related renumeration, make the supercilious twit work for his money.

Anonymous said...

Hatred for his critics that is Hamilton. Yes Peter they hate us because we hate being ripped off, try standing in our shoes Hamilton.

Remember the divine right of Kings and the injustice that led to the French revolution. This fool acts as if he believes in the divine right of Law Lords. Take a reality check Hamilton, labour pains are painful, and the judiciary will be reborn with us monitoring you and your subordinates to crush difference where an LLB criminal is exonerated behind closed doors to commit the same crime against another client. I truly believe you are mentally incapable of facing the fact WE HAVE HAD ENOUGH OF LAWYER CORRUPTION.

As always Peter, thanks please keep up the good work. We will too.

Also a big thanks to Rick Kordowski.

Dissent is renewing the justice system.

Anonymous said...

Blogs exist because lawyers are bastards.

Anonymous said...

So £214K a year is not enough for that poor dear Lord Hamilton to live on - WHAT PLANET IS HE LIVING ON!

The Planet where he can pay his utility bills, is isolated from judicial injustice, has wonderful holidays, will not need to make the choice between eating and heating in his retirement, put simply he wants more but unlike oliver Twist he will not go hungry.

He is a greedy pompous twit like the one who lived with (he believed) divine right, the occupant of the Palace of Versailles, the sun king.

Every epoch has it's assholes and Hamilton fits the bill on this count.

Anonymous said...

Don't you people have the right to protest about this kind of stuff in Scotland?
Its about time a protest movement got up & running about the state of your justice system because from where I am reading it sounds like you have a huge corruption problem from the judges down.
Stand up and be counted!

Anonymous said...

“Whatever people may think about lawyers (BASTARDS) on the whole lawyers are able to concentrate on what the legal issues are in the litigation and (YES ARTHUR PROTECTING ROYAL SUN ALLIANCE AND MARSH UK, INSURERS OF YOUR LAW SOCIETY MASTER POLICY, COVERING EVERYTHING UP TO SAVE RSA) lay people are very often unable to see the wood from the trees (YES WE NEED ADVICE FROM A SO CALLED PROFESSIONAL LIKE YOU ARTHUR) the relevant from the irrelevant”.

Yes Arthur we need educated people like you trained to critically analyse the situation I think not. You would be insured by Royal Sun Alliance the insurance company I am claiming damages from. Rick Kordowski said the courts always sided with law firms so he gave his website away. Good man Rick here we see Hamilton siding with his lawyers just as you said. We poor clients are unable to critically analyse the issues like a lawyer, listen Arthur old chap, we do not need lectures from those above the law, go visit a taxidermist.

Anonymous said...

How dare you question me, this is the attitude of the Lord Hamilton's of this world. Hamilton was against McKenzie friends, he cares only about legal professionals. Party litigants are clogg up the courts system Hamilton. That is rich when the legal profession use every trick in the book book to block claims against their own flock.

Hamilton is a man who is accountable to no one, is used to his own way and wants to hammer any group who threaten lawyers reputations. Every blogg I look at share one common fact, the Law Societies and Hamilton believe lawyers are never wrong, a symptom of a disease called self regulation, that brainwashes them and makes them hate clients.

In the court of public opinion Hamilton and his cohort of criminals control the courts for their benefit, not the benefit of the public at large. For an intelligent man he really is an enigma, biased, prejudiced against anyone who dissents against his profession. As I said before Hamilton, you need £65.00 a week unemployment benefit where you can go to the supermarket, pay your utility bills, and perhaps you will be jolted into reality and appreciate the salary you receive now.

Anonymous said...

£4,000 a week not enough? They must have some extraordinary living expenses to be able to get through that much!

As well as your idea about the register of interests we should have the full stats on these judges and how they do in cases to justify these huge salaries and all the expenses I imagine they get through as well.
Exactly those involved in the legal profession hate public scrutiny, they make decisions that affect peoples lives but dont want the public knowing what they get up to.

Anonymous said...

Well written as usual and the videos are a nice touch.

You may be interested to know the scripts were shared prior to LP's appearance.

Anonymous said...

Funny.I think you are the only journalist to have accurately reported Hamilton's trip to Holyrood this week.Speaks volumes of your motivation etc

btw your petition on the register/interests has been the subject of angry discussions if you hadn't already guessed.

Anonymous said...

Given Hamilton is the boss of the judiciary I think we can take his attitude towards party litigants as being the norm.Now we know what to expect in court when there is no lawyer for the judge to shower praise on we all need to do 'something different'.

Anonymous said...

Whatever people may think about lawyers blah blah says Lord Hamilton.

Well its nice to know who gets priority in our courts which we all have to pay for to keep these idiots in a job.Why the hell would anybody use a lawyer or use one of our biased Scottish courts when faced with this kind of garbage coming out of the judges.I think that Daily Record link has it just about right.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Don't you people have the right to protest about this kind of stuff in Scotland?
Its about time a protest movement got up & running about the state of your justice system because from where I am reading it sounds like you have a huge corruption problem from the judges down.
Stand up and be counted!

5 November 2011 00:27

Thank God someone suggested this!
Why are there no protests against the justice system like there are against Bankers and politicians?
Wake up people it is the justice system which backs up these bankers and politicians who in turn allow their friends the lawyers & judges to rip us all off!

Anonymous said...

If you are looking for horror stories about sheriffs I have a good one to tell hopefully you can help.

A sheriff up the road from us rammed my daughter's car last year while drunk.I called the Police they refused to breathalyse him and he claimed my daughter ran into him yet her car was stationery in snow had not moved for a week because she was away on holiday and his big 4x4 tore the whole passenger side away.No charges and he refused to admit responsibility have been fighting the insurers all year for payout but it has all been made worse because I complained about him being drunk and next thing we knew the Police hounded us all year on his behalf we have been threatened had windows smashed with bricks the Police wont come when called my son lost his job at a local garage because of the sheriff telling the owner a lot of lies about him and one of the Police who came out to the accident I hear gets backhanders from a local lawyer who sold the sheriff house he now stays in and is now well known in the area as being an utter crook.Can you write something about this please we are at our wits end and these sheriffs and judges just cover up for themselves while attacking us right left and centre how do I contact you please?

Anonymous said...

Lord Hamilton says he is short of candidates for jobs which draw in £3,800 a week!

I think our judges have become as greedy as the bankers!

Anonymous said...

The lawyer in the following story was also a serving sheriff although strangely enough not too many of the newspapers or tv mentioned that fact.I wonder why?Were they told to go easy on the judicial element of the £700,000 theft and if so by whom?

Conman lawyer jailed for fraud

A lawyer who admitted defrauding clients out of nearly £700,000 has been jailed for six-and-a-half years.

John Kennedy Forster, 54, from Stranraer, was told that he had displayed a gross breach of trust.

Forster had admitted a total of 34 charges of defrauding money from clients, including wills, trust funds, churches and charities.

At the High Court in Glasgow, Judge Lord Emslie condemned "the sheer extent and persistence" of his dishonesty.

He said the former lawyer had undertaken "systematic forging and falsification of documents to conceal what he had done".

Forster admitted embezzling money over a 10-year period and despite his promises to compensate some of his victims, the formerly respected solicitor was branded a "disgrace".

Anonymous said...

"However, past experience has taught me that regardless of how much evidence I present in the High Court to support my defence or claim, the judicial system will always side with the law firm, solicitor, or in this case The Law Society".

Yes Rick I noticed this on your site, so pay attention Lord Hamilton, you are the same supporting your own and venting your hatred towards party litigants. It is about justice I do not think.

Anonymous said...

The Law Societies cannot shut Solicitors From Hell, nice one Rick. Hudson will have smoke coming out of his ears.

Peter Cherbi said...

Thanks for your comments & contacts on this article.

I note some comments have raised issues regarding protests against the legal system.While this is not a forum for arranging such protests the media can obviously report on any protests taking place ...

# Anonymous @ 6 November 2011 16:40

Regarding your comment about the Sheriff can you contact me via as what you have said in your comment may be better appearing in a newspaper first.

# Anonymous @ 5 November 2011 22:23

While your comment is factually correct I think you have quite a task persuading any of the current "Occupy" movements to take on the legal system which is, factually, giving legal backing to vested interests as you have stated yourself.

# Anonymous @ 5 November 2011 14:05

Thanks and yes I have been informed of this ...

According to sources, it appears the judiciary of Scotland are not keen on my idea of a register of financial & non financial interests and neither are the Scottish Government ...

Suffice to say over the weekend I have seen & heard material to suggest much of what was said at last week's Justice Committee hearing by certain individuals was rehearsed and from notes made available, did appear to have a certain political agenda in mind ...

Anonymous said...

Once again fawning politicians of all parties dutifully and respectfully accept what's given without question.

Perhaps a flock of sheep would be an improvement?

Anonymous said...

I suppose in your line of work you must get to know a lot of real dirty stuff and scandals about these lawyers,the judges,who they associate with etc

You should write a book!

Anonymous said...

To the person (victim of a sheriff) who left the comment at 16:40 today I sincerely hope this rat is given the headlines and sack he deserves although as you see in the video his boss will probably waffle it away like everything else water off a ducks back and so on.

To Peter

As I watched the video clip of Lord Hamilton and the msps I began to wonder who was reading from the same script!

Peter Cherbi said...

# Anonymous @ 6 November 2011 21:36

Even the ticks on the sheep could do better ...

# Anonymous @ 6 November 2011 22:15

Yes, lots ... some too much to publish at least for now. One has to select the right time, and the right newspaper for the headlines to have the desired effect ... much more effective ...

# Anonymous @ 6 November 2011 23:03

Yes ... the questions on the salaries were like live bait to a hungry fish ...

Anonymous said...

Nice to see someone blowing up all those myths of the judiciary being honest upfront individuals beyond reproach.

More like a bunch of criminals.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like you have a lot to expose,brilliant!

About your petition do you think it will succeed?

There are a lot of idiots in that Parliament who must hate your guts because of all the legal shenanigans you exposed over the years.I was reading at one stage you had to raise the issue of a justice committee refusing to allow victims of lawyers to speak all the while the Law Society had free access to the same committee.How do you deal with such blatant prejudice by politicians?I'm sure they will try to sink it like your last petition was closed,bought & paid for by the Law Society mafia.

Anonymous said...

Aye Peter and where is Lord Gill now his Civil Court Review has lain in the dust all this time?
Not a peep from the one who spoke the truth about victorian justice and not fit for purpose?

Anonymous said...

Blatently obvious that the Lord Hamilton 'session' at the Justice 2 Committee was nothing more than a staged media event. (questions provided to him in advance of his appearance). So much for our Parliament being accountable to the people.

We can see who the Justice 2 Committee really serve?

Maybe, Lord Hamilton gets paid £200 per week plus ££3800 pounds a week protection money?

On a legal point; Given that Judges are supposed to be equitable to both parties before them.

They designed their system so that both parties before them would be Advocates (and more recently solicitor advocates).

As they are all lawyers then there can be no 'perceived bias'.

However, with the introduction of a 'Party Litigant' who is a non-lawyer, there is an 'automatic bias' there because on one side of the dispute only there is a lawyer.

I believe that on this fundamental legal point alone, that this is sufficient bias in of itself to affect the safety of the case and as such the case should be void.

This would not affect someones right to choose to have legal representation but what it would force them to do is to not to be able to take advantage of someone who does not have legal representation for whatever reason.

Of course this would finish the legal profession as a corrupt and self serving entity, which is why Lord Hamilton does not want Party Litigants any where near Scottish Courts and does not want them to be aware that they can challenge the neutrality of the Court.

Anonymous said...

I think that everyone who has got examples of bad experiences or bad behaviour of Judges and Sheriff's should write in to Peter to describe them so that he can draw them to the attention to the Justice 2 Committee, so that there is some 'balance' to this argument.

What about the Judges involved in the false prosecution of Megrahi?

What should happen to them for their complicity in that grandstanding cartoon caper?

Will they be docked wages, have their pensions reduced or will they be jailed for defeating the ends of justice?

Anonymous said...

Whatever people may think about lawyers on the whole lawyers are able to concentrate on what the legal issues are in the litigation and lay people are very often unable to see the wood from the trees the relevant from the irrelevant”.


Anonymous said...

This is a very shady argument.

If Judges don't get paid more they will be inclined to give out more bad decisions.

What about when a fat cat Arab (Scottish Lawyer) comes along with a brown envelope full of money, does that influence the Judges decision or are they uncorruptible?

Is our Judicial more Greek than the Greek's?

C'mon Stavros Hamilton, wake up and smell the Ouzo

Anonymous said...

Is it normal for a Sheriff to start shouting at you (when meeting you for the first time!) from the side passage way from his chambers leading to the bench?

Can see the Sheriff's trying to figure out which Court this is in.

You know who you are...

Anonymous said...

can a sheriff refuse to deal with a matter relating to the court case before him where you show him that there has been a prima facie breaking of the law by a government employee by the Sheriff saying that you will need to take it to a higher court for them to deal with?