29 Mar 2018

The British criminal justice system is one of the most important pillars of our society, but a sustained and woeful lack of government funding is causing it to crumble. The proposed Advocates’ Graduated Fee Scheme is yet another blow and might just be the one that brings the criminal justice system to its knees.  This must not be allowed to happen.

The new AGFS, due to be introduced on 1 April 2018 jeopardises the future of the publicly funded criminal bar and threatens access to justice for thousands.  The proposed cuts come at a time when the Criminal Justice System is in crisis; years of chronic underinvestment have left deep cracks in the system, and it is close to falling apart.   The public deserves better.

We therefore support the Criminal Bar Association’s call for a Charter for Justice and for the new AGFS to be opposed.  From 1st April 2018, our Crime Team will not be undertaking any new publicly funded Crown Court work.

Since 1978, we have, along with our instructing solicitors, sought to provide high quality representation for publicly funded clients.  All too often, these clients are some of the most marginalised in society.  We are grateful for our solicitors’ ongoing support and we share with them a common interest in striving to protect the criminal justice system, represent those who need us most, and achieve equal access to justice for all members of our society.

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