Mail on Sunday: Judge's anger as money is wasted on interpreters who can't even speak English
'It is wrecking the system and screw-ups are now endemic' says QC
A judge and a top barrister have condemned the use of interpreters based in a Polish call centre after trial against a Vietnamese drug king was halted.
Judge Richard Bray accused the firm of being 'hopelessly incompetent' when he was unable to sentence the man because no interpreter arrived at Northampton Crown Court.
Some of the language experts supplied by Capita Translating and Interpreting from a base in Krakow, cannot even speak fluent English, claim lawyers.
Interpreters are used by the Ministry of Justice to help run court cases and deportations involving foreign criminals, but trials are collapsing and case delayed because of problems with the system.
Capita staff book them under under a deal that is 'wrecking justice', claims QC Michael Turner.
He told the Sunday Express: 'This is merely one example of where the government pretends it's saving money, but in reality it is not.
'It is wrecking the system and screw-ups are now endemic. It is a con on the taxpayer and a con on the victims of crime.
''Interpreters do not turn up or when they do turn up they do not speak the right language or they do not speak English.'
He claimed top translators will not work for Capita because of its low pay.
In 2011, a five-year contract worth £90 million was awarded to Applied Language Solutions where it was alleged a dog was put on the company's register and a cat was invited to an interview because it was 'an expert' in 'cat language.'
ALS was taken over by Capita later that year and uses the Krakow centre to find interpreters for UK courts.
A Capita spokesman said its interpreters were properly qualified and vetted.