43 Med. Sci. & L. 1 (2003)

handle is hein.journals/mdsclw43 and id is 1 raw text is: 

Auld: The Lund Lecture - The Future of the Criminal Justice System 1

The   Lund Lecture - The Future of the Criminal Justice

Given  to the British Academy  of Forensic Sciences  on  9th October 2002


It is an honour to give this lecture in memory of
Sir Thomas Lund, and to such a distinguished
gathering of forensic scientists. You will note
that I use those last two words to this largely
legal audience in their correct sense. As many
of you will know, Sir Thomas died just over 20
years ago after a long and eminent legal and
administrative career, some thirty years of it
as Secretary-General to the Law Society. He
also gave richly of his time to other national
and international bodies concerned with the
practice of law, including this Academy, of
which he was  a foundation member  and, in
1961, President.
  The  title of this talk - which I left to Tony
Hooper - 'The Future of the Criminal Justice
System', is general and leaves me scope for
manoeuvre. I could tell you what I think the
future ought to be. I could comment on the
Government's  intentions, to the extent that
they are evident. Or I could star-gaze and tell
you what I think the future might be. Now, like
Sam   Goldwyn, I  normally don't prophesy,
especially about the future. But perhaps I
can play safe, and do a bit of all three.
  As you know, after an 18 months review of
the working of our Criminal Courts, I reported
to the Government in October 2001. Some six
months  before I  did so, the Government
published a  major policy paper, Criminal
Justice: The Way Ahead, which - seemingly
independently of my  Review - it had been
preparing for the comprehensive overhaul of
the criminal justice system. In its White Paper,
'Justice for All', published nearly a year after I
submitted my  Report, the Government  has
now set out proposals for reform, developing its

policy paper and responding to my recommen-
   The White Paper is a pallid document, long
on generality and the distant future, and short
on  the specific and medium  term. This is
largely because of lack of money. It was clear
in the last public spending round, which was
under way while the White Paper was in draft,
that there was going to be very little provision
for the reform of the criminal justice system.
So it has proved. There are also signs in the
document  that departmental  silo mentality
continues to flourish, both between the Home
Office and the Lord Chancellor's Department
and  between  the various  criminal justice
  At my own  request, I had little or nothing to
do with the Government's consultations and
deliberations following the submission of my
Report. It seemed to me that I had done my job
- good or bad - rather like a judgment. It was
for the Court of Appeal of public opinion and,
eventually, Parliament, to make what  they
want  of it. So, I have given no press confer-
ences or media interviews. But, as tonight, I
have talked to those doing the business, many
of whom helped me in the Review.
   In the short time I have with you, I cannot
paint a complete picture of the future of the
criminal justice system - even in the most
summary  form. And I should try to remember
that my  audience has a  particular concern
with that part of it for which the courts are
responsible. I shall, therefore, talk about some
key features as they concern the working of
the courts. These are: (1) a single criminal
justice system; (2) a single criminal court;

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