By James Simons-
An IT failure in the courts has caused further delays to lawyers, sparking severe disruption.
The Crown Court Digital Case System (CCDCS) broke down for most of the day, inconveniencing lawyers and defendants today. Barristers incurred losses as a result of the disruption which had spillover effects on other legal commitments they had.
The Criminal Bar Association said the problems which occurred at the Central Criminal Court were also present in courts in Sheffield, Carlisle, Nottingham, Exeter and Norwich. The breakdown led to several cases to be adjourned, leaving many defendants and litigants who travelled far to attend cases feeling disheartened. Some travelled as far as four hours to Sheffield after taking the day off work, only to be told of the IT failures which aborted scheduled plans for court cases.
It is the second time in the last two months that the court system in parts of Britain has been disrupted due to technical problems. Barristers were left angry in January when the court system across the Uk was hit by a similar technical fault that led to many barristers complaining of suffering financial losses. The last couple of days has followed a similar pattern to the nightmare experienced in January, but affected less courts on this occasion.
Judges and barristers in many parts of the Uk were forced to reschedule their plans, leaving many people feeling very angry in various courts. A source from the Criminal Bar Association told The Eye Of Media.Com : Delays and adjournments like these damage faith in the criminal justice system. They are becoming potentially very harmful and can have serious effects on the victims of crime and their families, and also witnesses.
IT failures should never occur in courts. It highlights the urgency for more money in the system to keep the system afloat.
Something urgent needs to be done to address this failing, it must not continue.”
Chris Henley QC, chair of the CBA, said: ‘Barristers and judges are growing very tired of cases being disrupted because of inadequate technologily infrastructure. Our system continues to crumble.’