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Tag: law

The Irish Speak English Don’t They?

I was asked the question in the title. It was in Thailand, so it was understandable. I have found on my travels in Asia that I often have to explain about the Irish, Scots, Welsh and English. Anyone who has experienced working with an Irish man or woman can attest to the fact that most have a way with words and storytelling. My varied work experiences brought me into contact with so many of them especially in my former careers as a detective and a barrister, as colleagues and clients! Irish Counsel My law practice as a barrister in England was predominantly as an advocate in criminal trials. Most of those trials culminated in final speeches. A final speech is the advocate’s last opportunity to…


“Barrister Speak”: A Guide

I shamelessly reproduce this post on a blog from a barrister finding his way through the criminal justice system in England. I thank my London lawyer friend who posted the dialog on Facebook. It deserves as wide an audience as possible. It is so “on the button” and so true. Sometimes the barrister jargon backfires on the speaker. It happened to me once in front of a senior judge at Inner London Crown Court. Whatever I said to him, and of course in “barrister speak” but I forget exactly what I said, was not fully understood by the learned judge. I was in one of those awkward spots when the client was being extremely difficult if not impossible, and I had to convey to the judge…


Humor in the Courtroom

Humor in the Courtroom How Do Court Reporters Keep a Straight Face? They are usually a very solemn place but humor in the courtroom does happen. These are exchanges that took place and are things people actually said in court (allegedly), word for word, taken down and published by court reporters that had the torment of staying calm while the exchanges were taking place. ATTORNEY: What was the first thing your husband said to you that morning? WITNESS: He said, ‘Where am I, Cathy?’ ATTORNEY: And why did that upset you? WITNESS: My name is Susan! _______________________________ ATTORNEY: What gear were you in at the moment of the impact? WITNESS: Gucci sweats and Reeboks. ____________________________________________ ATTORNEY: Are you sexually active? WITNESS: No, I just lie…


She Had Blonde Hair And Long Legs and Another Was A Male Prostitute

Barristers come in all shapes and sizes. Some even have blonde hair and long legs. For those of you outside of the UK a barrister is a lawyer. The kind of lawyer who wears those grey wigs, funny collars and long black gowns. Lawyers who for many years frequently used Latin in the courts. “romantic notion of the trial lawyer” Many young people have grown up with a romantic notion of the trial lawyer who wins the day in court by virtue of a brilliant cross examination! Thus tearing the witness apart and destroying the case for the prosecution! I blame a diet of TV shows for fostering this notion. US shows such as LA Law and a British series called Kavanagh QC are prime examples…

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