As part of its fight against crime the UK Government has announced that it will be setting up new courts to try certain offences. These Blunkett Courts will operate as follows –
If a defendant is accused of several offences he or she will be able to chose to be tried on one of the alleged offences and have the rest discarded. For example, if a defendant is accused of eight transgressions they will be able to decide which of these will be examined and the remainder will then be set aside.
The defendant will be able to chose who will act as judge in the court. The Government has indicated that they prefer that this be a friend or colleague of the defendant. As a symbol of his office a Blunkett Court judge will carry a large brush and a bucket of whitewash, instead of wearing the usual wig and gown.
Witnesses will not be asked to give evidence on oath and may freely lose or destroy any documentary evidence if they feel it appropriate.
To prevent undue stress on the defendant the Blunkett Court of Appeal will state in advance of the trial that the defendant is a person of the utmost integrity and cannot have done any wrong.
To prevent abuse, trial in a Blunkett Court will only be available to people who are close personal friends of the Prime Minister.
The Government are confident that the new courts will send out a clear message about its integrity and its commitment to the rule of law.