Norwich Judge refuses to believe Capita explanation, says enquiries will be made
The following record of default was submitted on http://rpsi.name/default/
Place: Norwich Crown Court
Interpreter: Not Known
Interpreter booked through the sole contractor
Case: R v Morkūnas T20127248
Noticed by: Defence Counsel
The above case was listed at 9.30 for custody time limit (CTL) hearing. The interpreter should have been there for a conference at 9.00 but did not arrive until 10.30.
The case was called on twice but the court could not proceed as no interpreter was present. The defendant had to have a conference with the instructing solicitor in English. The solicitor, having had many hours in conference with the defendant, was able - just - to adapt to his limited vocabulary. Fortunately, for complex reasons, the outcome had no practical implications for him.
This is the usual. The explanation given by Capita was that she, the interpreter, had been booked for 10.30. No member of the Norwich CC staff would have made a booking for 10.30 as it is established over many years that CTL hearings are at 9.30 and need to be preceded by a conference. The knock-on effect was that the trial in which I, Defence Counsel, was committed in an adjoining court, was delayed. Fortunately there was no practical loss as late disclosure aborted the trial. The learned Judge did not appear to believe the explanation of the interpreter being booked for 10.30 and said enquiries would be made.
Under the old system there were a number of excellent Lithuanian interpreters who lived within 40 minutes of the court, were familiar with its practises, and have never, in my experience, been late.
The above information I have supplied is true
*Barrister name and contact details withheld by Linguist Lounge*