The Supreme Court held that this could only be read prospectively (into the future) and did not avail the State in its arguments. (The Supreme Court also found that the Act, as so read, was constitutional. It also found that the offence “assault occasioning actual bodily harm” was a common law offence.)
The court found that as a matter of probability, a defendant will be afforded a fair trial in summary proceedings in the District Court while represented solely by a solicitor.
In a criminal trial the role of the villain is always allocated to the accused, it seems.
However, I look forward to the case where I inform a court that my client will so plead.
Little did I know, when I remarked on the tendency for the very institution, presumed to oversee a situation, to be suborned and used directly contrary to its purpose, that prima facie evidence of such prominence would spring up so quickly.
Consider this; in the writerâs experience when the word âindependentâ? is associated with the title of any institution, it is invariably the case that the institution is not âindependentâ?.
endorsed the decision in R v Morais (1988) 87 Cr App R 9. In that case the judge had given leave to prefer a voluntary bill against the accused, who was arraigned on six counts in the bill. The accused pleaded not guilty, was convicted on four counts and was sentenced. Relying on the Administration of Justice (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1933, he appealed on the ground that the bill had never been signed by the proper officer: without a signature, he argued, there could be no indictment, and without an indictment there could be no valid trial.
In Morais the Court of Appeal agreed with the submission. The court endorsed a statement of Peter Pain J in an earlier case:
It seems to us that it is impossible for a criminal trial to start without there being a valid indictment to which the defendant can plead, and that the bill of indictment does not become an indictment until it is signed”.
In Ireland the relevant legislation is the Criminal Justice (Administration) Act 1924. It mandates the form of the indictment in the Act and in the First Schedule to the Act. The choice of indictment is limited to the charges expressed or implied in the documents known as the âBook of Evidenceâ? served on the accused.
Morris was, probably, a counterfeit solicitor. Even so, as remarked by Dr. Watson’s companion, he had benefited Mr. Wilson, the red-headed pensioner by £30 and a deep knowledge of every subject coming under the letter “A” in the Encyclopaedia Britannica, before abruptly dissolving the League and ending Mr. Wilson’s income.