A recent court hearing has heard that former Labour peer Lord Janner is suffering from advanced and disabling dementia with a judge has ruling that he is unfit to plead in a criminal trial over a ranged of sex abuse charges dating back 50 years.
The judge made his decisions based on a series of medical reports from four experts. The most recent report, from September, stated that Lord Janner has no short-term memory, barely recognises his family and “can now hardly speak”.
A “trial of the facts” is scheduled to take place next April, when a jury will decide if he committed the abuse, with no finding of guilt or conviction.
Child abuse solicitor Peter Garsden, whose law firm Simpson Millar are representing 8 clients who have alleged abuse by Lord Janner said: “I am disappointed by Justice Openshaw’s decision. I fully supported the previous rulings of both Chief Magistrate Riddle and District Judge Arbuthnot and always maintained that it was in the public interest for Lord Janner to stand trial and face to the very serious accusations before him. Given the consensus around Lord Janner’s worsening health, it has always been our wish that a trial happen at the earliest possible opportunity to ensure the interests of justice were best served. It seems that, following several delays to proceedings, the only remaining option available is a trial of the facts which is unsatisfactory conclusion for the victims of Lord Janner that I represent. A trial of the facts, however, will, at least, give the victims the opportunity to be heard, and give their evidence in Court.’
Mr Garsden has been interviewed and asked for comments by various media since July 2015 when the decision of an independent QC overruled the original decision of Alison Saunders, the Director of Public Prosecutions not to charge Lord Janner because of his dementia. You can read more on the Lord Janner abuse charges on abuselaw.co.uk
To read more on this story from the BBC click here.