Another case, another struggle with Vietnamese interpreters
I was a duty solicitor on Tuesday night we were instructed on a cannabis factory case. Due to the co-accused giving an age the police did not believe we weren't interviewed until mid afternoon. A decent interpreter turned up on time (credit where credit due).
To the surprise of my rep our client and the "youngster" were charged and RIC. I am fortunate to have a Vietnamese member of staff so she came in to see him with me. No police booked interpreter attended and at lunchtime despite many requests the court finally looked in to it. They booked Capita at 2 - the use of my interpreter for the case was discounted. No interpreter attended and at 2 pm with no idea of what was happening the pair were remanded to today.
The youth was taken to a detention centre and my client to Winson Green - an adult prison!! He is 18. Last night the court clerk in our hearing booked a new interpreter. None has arrived and despite conflicting stories we are now told none has been booked. The DJ has decided that should my interpreter be present this afternoon then a pragmatic approach may be taken. So all day yesterday much of today all for me for the mileage!! Of course we did nothing to help!!!
We went to the crown court as I ascertained that a trial was taking place there with a Vietnamese interpreter. No, can't use her. The 2 people in custody are highly confused and both allocated to incorrect institutions. Mine has already tried to dispense with my services. Luckily the approached solicitor on realising someone else instructed withdrew and let me know. This is how I make £'0000's a year!!
We used my interpreter in the end.