Manchester juror who skipped jury service
GCN's Mark George QC appeared on the BBC national News at Six today to provide legal context on the decision to sentence juror Matthew Banks to 14 days in a young offenders institution after a judge found him to be in contempt of court for pretending to be sick.
Matthew Banks, 19, had pretended to be sick to avoid jury service so he could attend a West End musical. He was freed 5 days into his 14 day sentence.
Mark George QC explained in an interview for BBC News why contempt of court was a charge open to the judge dealing with the offence and how the sentence was then calculated and served. He also pointed out that jury service is an important civic duty. Most people favour the idea of trial by jury but that requires ordinary members of the public to be prepared to give up their time to do it when summonsed.