I have been trying child abuse cases since the memorandum was published and can state that Ms Campbell's comments are simply not true. Every consideration is given to the child attending my court. They are introduced to the court and the TV and video link system before the trial begins, during a familiarisation visit. They are introduced to the judge and counsel privately. Indeed, at this court centre, we have special rooms and facilities provided for the sole use of the child and their families.
All this is to put the child at ease and helps the judge to determine the pace at which the child can be taken through the evidence. I generally never let a child be examined for more than half an hour at any one time. Where leave has been given for an interview on video to be played to the jury, the children have it played back to them first, before they are asked any questions. If the video is not to be played they can still see it first to refresh their memories.
Ms Campbell's article gives a very misleading impression of the way modern trials are conducted.
20 OctoberReuse content