Shall we have a sweepstake on when the first big punch up takes place before parties â€¦NBR explains (paid content):
Criminal re-offending may be linked to where bad guys sit in court.
And in what has been described by one senior lawyer as â€śThe Inmates are Running the Asylumâ€ť, the justice ministry is about to test the theory at North Shore district court.
From early next year defendants â€“ who traditionally stand in the dock at the side of the courtroom â€“ will move to the front of the court alongside their lawyer.
The theory is that defendants standing in the dock at the side of the court do not â€śengageâ€ť with the court process and therefore reoffend.
Moving defendants to the front of the court, sitting or standing directly in front of a judge, is reckoned to be more â€śinclusiveâ€ť and likely to prevent reoffending.
Believe this or not, courts minister Chester Borrows thinks it is a great idea and chief district court judge Jan Marie Doogue has approved the pilot.
Apparently justice minister Judith Collins is not involved.