Applied Language Solutions supplies a Lithuanian interpreter who speaks broken Russian instead
My observation in Nottingham Crown Court on 02.04.2012:
The preliminary hearing was scheduled for 11.30 and indeed, at 11.30 the name of the defendant (Lithuanian) was announced after which the solicitor and ALS linguist appeared from around the corner (I knew it was a linguist as he had a blue lanyard with the ALS logo on it and he clutched a Russian dictionary under his arm). I followed them into the court room and took my seat in the second row. We waited for a video-link to commence after which the linguist was sworn in, and answered the question about his name. However, he didn’t say which language he was going to interpret in.
The Prosecutor started to talk. The linguist started to interpret. The first sentence was in a language I didn’t recognise, but after that the linguist did switch to Russian. He wasn’t interpreting everything, but summarised. I cannot say that his Russian was non-existent; he did produce utterances I could understand, but it is not what I would call the level of a professional interpreter! It was pigeon Russian, maybe to the standard of GCSE. The Lithuanian (!) defendant didn’t say a word and it was difficult to assess whether he understood anything at all.
Here are just some examples of the ALS linguist’s interpreting:
- "We need to organise another date" - «Время даётся когда на другое время» (time is given when for another time);
Prosecutor -"I think that we will manage it in two days even with the interpreter"- «значит он думает, что всё будет нормально и займётся точно два дня даже присутствие переводчика» (so he thinks that everything will be normal and occupy exactly 2 days even the presence of an interpreter);
- "I would like to remind you that you will receive a credit for your guilty plea" - «если сегодня признаетесь, то вам будет лучше» (if you admit today it would be better for you);
- "The record will show that credit was offered to you" - «Вам бы дали положительные пункты сегодня, если вы признали» (positive points will be given to you if you admit);
- "You will have to prepare your defence statement" - «Ваш адвокат готовит ваши данные» (your solicitor is preparing your data).
It's shocking that ALS "stars" can get away with such poor performance on a daily basis. What he does is absolutely criminal.