STUDENT ROLE GUIDE: LAWYERS

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1 magistrates court mock trial competition STUDENT ROLE GUIDE: LAWYERS Sponsored by Organised in partnership with

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3 Contents Role Guide: Lawyers 2 ID Slip 5 Order of Procedure 6 Evaluation 8

4 Student Role Guide: Lawyers Introduction Your team will contain two prosecution lawyers and two defence lawyers. Each lawyer will present one examination-in-chief and one cross-examination as well as an opening or closing speech. Remember, you are marked on your performance, not the verdict. Rules of Professional Conduct You should call other lawyers my learned friend pronounced learn-ed (meaning qualified lawyer). Prosecuting Lawyer You introduce any credible evidence, even if it suggests that the defendant is not guilty. This ensures that the court reaches the right verdict, not just a guilty verdict. Defending Lawyer You put forward the case that the defendant wishes, even if it is unlikely/unpopular. Do not establish the defendant s innocence if they have admitted guilt. s have a right to be tried by magistrates and not by lawyers. Checklist for Lawyers Do Make your questioning conversational. Know your objectives with every witness make a list if required, but be flexible. Commit the witness to detail before you make your point.** Ask witness X about something witness Y said or did, only IF witness Y has given evidence about it already. Think about what aspects would trouble you if you had to decide the case. Allow your witness to answer your questions don t bully them! Don t Repeat questions already asked. Make questions into statements. Ask long or multiple questions without purpose. Exceed the time allocations as set out in the order of procedure. Rely on pre-prepared scripts. Express your personal opinion. Ask a witness a question that they cannot answer from their statement. Give evidence. You are only presenting the cases. ** E.g. don t just ask, Do you think it s strange that the defendant was not with you when the alleged incident took place? Build up to it and give them a chance to provide an explanation: Was the defendant with you at the time the incident took place? Did she tell you where she was going? Did you see her enter the toilets? Did you see her come out of the toilets? Are the toilets anywhere near the dance floor? 2

5 Competition Rules 1. Leading questions During the examination-in-chief you must not put words into the mouth of the witnesses, nor phrase questions to invite a particular answer. To avoid leading, use questions that start with What, Why, When, How, Where, Who. Here are some examples: You went into the shop, didn t you? Would you say that the assailant was a tall person? Is it not true that the defendant is an aggressive person? Where did you go next? What did the assailant look like? How did the defendant behave? 2. Previous Inconsistent Statements If a witness earlier written statement differs in any way with what s/he says in the box, you may question this discrepancy in the cross-examination. For example, a witness could claim that she saw the defendant carrying a knife, but in her written statement, that she could not remember this. Before asking the witness about this, you must ask if she made any statement on a particular date, and if she agrees with what is written. 3. Hearsay evidence This is evidence of the oral statements of a person other than the witness who is testifying, and cannot be used in the competition. For example, witness Kate states that she heard Alice saying that Tony (the defendant) told her that he committed the crime. Tony s confession is hearsay: it is not something that Kate saw or heard. The witness who should give the evidence is Alice. Cases of hearsay require an application to be made to the judge trying the case. 4. Lawyer s Identification Slips It is your responsibility to complete the I.D slips. Your teacher will give you these. Task List for Lawyers: Analyse statements of the witnesses you are questioning Write an opening (Prosecution Lawyer 1 only) or closing speech (Defence Lawyer 1 only) Write an examination- in-chief Write a cross examination I.D slips 3

6 Opening Speech (Prosecution Lawyer 1 only): You will need to include the Burden of Proof, the charge that has to be proved, the facts, and the disputed facts (see case). Examination-in-chief You have called the witness and will get the facts from him/her first: 1. Establish all the main points of your case as clearly and persuasively as possible. 2. Don t leave your witnesses vulnerable to cross-examination by allowing them the opportunity to give reasons for things that might strike the magistrates as strange. 3. Don t use leading questions. Cross examination You are examining the opponent s witnesses: 1. Highlight flaws and inconsistencies in the opposition s case you could use leading questions to expose contradictions. However, try not to be too aggressive. 2. Put your case to the opponent s witness. Closing speech (Defence Lawyer 1 only): This is made after all the witnesses have given their evidence and been cross-examined: 1. Don t refer to facts that have not been given in evidence during that particular trial. 2. Emphasise the weaknesses in the prosecution s case, but stick to the evidence given in court. 3. Face the strengths of the prosecution s case examine each one for its value. 4. Refer to the law, but not in detail. 5. Remind magistrates that they cannot convict unless the prosecution have made them sure, beyond reasonable doubt, of the defendant s guilt. Include quotes from the witnesses to back up your points. Please note that lawyers cannot interrupt or object during the trial only Lead Magistrates and Court Stewards are allowed to do so. 4

7 N.B These slips should be completed by lawyers before the day of the heat. The Legal Adviser will use this information to inform the bench who is representing each side in the case. Prosecution Identification Slip The prosecution lawyers should give their completed slip to the (who is a member of the same team), before the trial begins. School: Date: Prosecution Lawyer 1: Prosecution Lawyer 2: Defence Identification Slip The defence lawyers should give their completed slip to the (who will be a member of the prosecuting team) before the trial begins. School: Date: Defence Lawyer 1: Defence Lawyer 2: 5

8 Order of Procedure The Order of Procedure sets out the process of the trial step by step. Time allocations must be strictly adhered to. Role Event (Spoken lines in bold type) Timing BEGINNING OF TRIAL Court rise Everyone Stands Leads magistrates into courtroom Magistrates Enter the court, bow and sit. Lawyers and court staff bow in return Everyone Sits Stands. The prosecution is represented today by [names] and the defence by [names]. Gives the I.D slips to the Lead Magistrate asks the defendant to stand 2 minutes Stands Are you? Yes Is your address? Yes Is your date of birth? Yes Are you represented by? Yes You are charged with (insert charge from Case Outline here). Do you understand? Yes How do you plead? Not guilty To the magistrates: The defendant has consented to a trial in a magistrates court. We are in a position to proceed with the trial today. May the defendant be seated? Lead Magistrate Gives the defendant permission to sit down CASE FOR THE PROSECUTION 1 st Prosecution Lawyer Makes the opening speech 1 st Prosecution Lawyer Calls the 1 st prosecution witness Leads the witness to the witness box. Asks them to repeat this affirmation: I do solemnly, sincerely and truly declare and affirm that the evidence I shall give shall be the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth 6

9 1 st Prosecution Witness Repeats affirmation 1 st Prosecution Lawyer Examination in chief of 1 st prosecution witness 4½ minutes 1 st Defence Lawyer Cross examination of 1 st prosecution witness 4½minutes Leads 1 st prosecution witness back to his/her seat 2 nd Prosecution Lawyer Calls 2 nd prosecution witness Leads 2 nd prosecution witness to the witness box. Asks them to repeat this affirmation: I do solemnly (as above) 2 nd Prosecution Witness Repeats affirmation 2 nd Prosecution Lawyer Examination in chief of 2 nd prosecution witness 4½ minutes 2 nd Defence Lawyer Cross examination of 2 nd prosecution witness 4½ minutes Leads 2 nd prosecution witness back to his/her seat 1 st Prosecution Lawyer Asks legal adviser to read Section 9 statement Reads Section 9 statement 2 minutes 2 nd Prosecution Lawyer That is the case for the prosecution CASE FOR THE DEFENCE 1 st Defence Lawyer Calls the defendant Leads defendant to the witness box. Asks them to repeat this affirmation: I do solemnly (as above) Repeats affirmation 1 st Defence Lawyer Examination in chief of defendant 4½ minutes 1 st Prosecution Lawyer Cross examination of defendant 4½ minutes Leads defendant back to his/her seat 2 nd Defence Lawyer Calls 2 nd defence witness Leads 2 nd defence witness to the witness box. Asks them to repeat this affirmation: I do solemnly (as above) 2 nd Defence Witness Repeats affirmation 2 nd Defence Lawyer Examination in chief of 2 nd defence witness 4½ minutes 2 nd Prosecution Lawyer Cross examination of 2 nd defence witness 4½ minutes Leads 2 nd defence witness back to his/her seat 1 st Defence Lawyer Makes closing speech. That is the case for the defence 4 minutes CONCLUSION OF THE TRIAL Summary of the law for the magistrates 3 minutes Court rise Everyone Stands Magistrates Retire to consider their verdict 12 minutes Court rise Everyone Stands Leads magistrates into courtroom Magistrates Enter the court. Bow to the court before sitting. Lawyers and court staff bow in return Everyone Sits Lead Magistrate Tells the court the verdict and possible sentences that might be given 2 minutes 7

10 Evaluation We have provided two questionnaires for students to fill in, both before and after you participate in the heats so that we can evaluate this year's competition. These are called Pre-participation (to be filled in before the heat) and Post-participation evaluations (to be filled in after your last heat so if you proceed to the regional or national final, please fill in this one after that). They can be found online at: Pre-participation Evaluation: Post-participation Evaluation: It is really important for us to hear your opinions about the competition so that we can make improvements for future years. Every student that completes both surveys will be entered into a draw to receive a 20 voucher. The survey data will be used anonymously, but we do ask that you please enter your name and your school s name at the end so that we can enter you into the draw and contact your teacher to send you the prize if you are selected. Finally, we hope you enjoy participating in the Magistrates Court Mock Trial Competition! Good luck! 8

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