The 1957 film ‘Twelve Angry Men’ tells the story of a jury made up of 12 men as they deliberate the guilt or acquittal of a defendant on the basis of reasonable doubt.
In today’s courts, jurors are still made up of 12 persons but from all backgrounds and of all genders. Members of the jury are randomly selected from the local Electoral Register and comprise of persons aged between 17 -70. However, the upper age range will be increased to 75 under new legislation.
What with the onset of the Coronavirus crisis, new urgent guidelines set out by the Lord Chief Justice have come into force where no new Crown Court trials will take place in England or Wales if they are expected to last longer than three days. Lord Burnett of Maldon said it was, ‘not realistic’ to suppose that it will be business as usual in any jurisdiction, although he maintained it is of 'vital importance that the administration of justice does not grind to a halt'.
These steps have been taken to protect the health of legal staff, jurors and the public.
For more information, see the BBC article.
This is not legal advice; it is intended to provide information of general interest about current legal issues.