Francis FitzGibbon

Francis FitzGibbon is a KC. He was chair of the Criminal Bar Association from 2016 to 2017.

From The Blog
30 January 2024

On one view, a placard in the street in front of a court building, visible to members of the public who may or may not be jurors, could hardly amount to an interference with anything; it might even give useful information – especially if a decision to acquit based on conscience really is a right that jurors have.

From The Blog
7 August 2023

The Illegal Migration Bill (now in force as the Illegal Migration Act) was debated without the usual ministerial statement that it was compatible with the European Convention on Human Rights. The ‘statement of compatibility’ is a non-compulsory feature of the legislative process introduced by the Human Rights Act from 2000. Governments have dispensed with it only three times since.

From The Blog
31 March 2023

‘Sir,’ Samuel Johnson said to Boswell as they toured the Hebrides:

a lawyer has no business with the justice or injustice of the cause which he undertakes, unless his client asks his opinion, and then he is bound to give it honestly. The justice or injustice of the cause is to be decided by the judge. Consider, sir; what is the purpose of the courts of justice? It is, that every man may have his cause fairly tried, by men appointed to try causes.

Johnson expresses the rationale for the ‘cab rank rule’ that barristers continue to obey.

Short Cuts: Locking On

Francis FitzGibbon, 10 February 2022

The​ Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill, which has just gone through the House of Lords and will soon return to the Commons, is a miscellany. Not all of it is controversial, but it has two highly contentious elements: first, the government wants to add more weapons to the state’s formidable arsenal of measures to restrict public protest. The House of Lords has thrown out...

Short Cuts: Raab’s British Rights

Francis FitzGibbon, 7 October 2021

DominicRaab is the eighth lord chancellor and secretary of state for justice since the Conservative Party entered government in 2010. The average tenure has been nineteen months, with a corresponding churn of junior ministers and special advisers. Kenneth Clarke, the first in the post, lasted 28 months, just pipped by Chris Grayling, whose disastrous term was the longest at 32 months....

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