House of Lords portcullis
House of Lords
Session 2002 - 03
Internet Publications
Other Bills before Parliament

Courts Bill [HL]


Courts Bill [HL]
Part 3 — Magistrates’ courts

    22

 

 45    Power to make rulings at pre-trial hearings

     (1)    Schedule 4 contains amendments of the 1980 Act relating to rulings at pre-trial

hearings in magistrates’ courts.

     (2)    The amendments made by the Schedule apply in relation to pre-trial hearings

beginning on or after the day on which it comes into force.

5

 46    Power to transfer criminal cases

     (1)    After section 27 of the 1980 Act insert—

“Transfer of criminal proceedings

       27A            Power to transfer criminal proceedings

           (1)           Where a person appears or is brought before a magistrates’ court—

10

                  (a)                 to be tried by the court for an offence, or

                  (b)                 for the court to inquire into the offence as examining justices,

                         the court may transfer the matter to another magistrates’ court.

           (2)           The court may transfer the matter before or after beginning the trial or

inquiry.

15

           (3)           But if the court transfers the matter after it has begun to hear the

evidence and the parties, the court to which the matter is transferred

must begin hearing the evidence and the parties again.

           (4)                                       The power of the court under this section to transfer any matter must

be exercised in accordance with any directions given under section

20

30(3) of the Courts Act 2003.”

     (2)    Omit section 3B of the 1980 Act (transfer of trials of summary offences).

Civil jurisdiction and procedure

 47    Jurisdiction to issue summons and deal with complaints

     (1)    For section 51 of the 1980 Act (issue of summons on complaint) substitute—

25

       “51            Issue of summons on complaint

Where a complaint relating to a person is made to a justice of the peace,

the justice of the peace may issue a summons to the person requiring

him to appear before a magistrates’ court to answer to the complaint.”

     (2)    For section 52 of the 1980 Act (jurisdiction to deal with complaints) substitute—

30

       “52            Jurisdiction to deal with complaints

           (1)           A magistrates’ court has jurisdiction to hear any complaint.

           (2)           But subsection (1) is subject to provision made by any enactment.”

 

 

Courts Bill [HL]
Part 3 — Magistrates’ courts

    23

 

 48    Power to transfer civil proceedings (other than family proceedings)

After section 57 of the 1980 Act insert—

“Transfer of civil proceedings (other than family proceedings)

       57A            Power to transfer civil proceedings (other than family proceedings)

           (1)           A magistrates’ court may at any time, whether before or after

5

beginning to hear a complaint, transfer the hearing to another

magistrates’ court.

           (2)           But if the court transfers the matter after it has begun to hear the

evidence and the parties, the court to which the matter is transferred

must begin hearing the evidence and the parties again.

10

           (3)           This section does not apply to family proceedings.

           (4)           The power of the court under this section to transfer a hearing must be

exercised in accordance with any directions given under section 30(3)

of the Courts Act 2003.”

Family proceedings courts and youth courts

15

 49    Family proceedings courts

     (1)    For section 67 of the 1980 Act (family proceedings courts and panels)

substitute—

       “67 Family proceedings courts

           (1)           Magistrates’ courts—

20

                  (a)                 constituted in accordance with this section or section 66 of the

Courts Act 2003 (judges having powers of District Judges

(Magistrates’ Courts)), and

                  (b)                 sitting for the purpose of hearing family proceedings,

                         are to be known as family proceedings courts.

25

           (2)           A justice of the peace is not qualified to sit as a member of a family

proceedings court to hear family proceedings of any description unless

he has an authorisation extending to the proceedings.

           (3)           He has an authorisation extending to the proceedings only if he has

been authorised by the Lord Chancellor or a person acting on his behalf

30

to sit as a member of a family proceedings court to hear—

                  (a)                 proceedings of that description, or

                  (b)                 all family proceedings.

           (4)           The Lord Chancellor may by rules make provision about—

                  (a)                 the grant and revocation of authorisations,

35

                  (b)                 the appointment of chairmen of family proceedings courts, and

                  (c)                 the composition of family proceedings courts.

           (5)           Rules under subsection (4) may confer powers on the Lord Chancellor

with respect to any of the matters specified in the rules.

 

 

Courts Bill [HL]
Part 3 — Magistrates’ courts

    24

 

           (6)           Rules under subsection (4) may be made only after consultation with

the Family Procedure Rule Committee.

           (7)           Rules under subsection (4) are to be made by statutory instrument.

           (8)           A statutory instrument containing rules under subsection (4) is subject

to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of

5

Parliament.”

     (2)    Omit section 68 of the 1980 Act (combined family panels for two or more petty

sessions areas).

 50    Youth courts

     (1)    For section 45 of the 1933 Act (constitution of youth courts) substitute—

10

       “45 Youth courts

           (1)           Magistrates’ courts—

                  (a)                 constituted in accordance with this section or section 66 of the

Courts Act 2003 (judges having powers of District Judges

(Magistrates’ Courts)), and

15

                  (b)                 sitting for the purpose of—

                        (i)                        hearing any charge against a child or young person or

                        (ii)                       exercising any other jurisdiction conferred on youth

courts by or under this or any other Act,

                         are to be known as youth courts.

20

           (2)           A justice of the peace is not qualified to sit as a member of a youth court

for the purpose of dealing with any proceedings unless he has an

authorisation extending to the proceedings.

           (3)           He has an authorisation extending to the proceedings only if he has

been authorised by the Lord Chancellor or a person acting on his behalf

25

to sit as a member of a youth court to deal with—

                  (a)                 proceedings of that description, or

                  (b)                 all proceedings dealt with by youth courts.

           (4)           The Lord Chancellor may by rules make provision about—

                  (a)                 the grant and revocation of authorisations,

30

                  (b)                 the appointment of chairmen of youth courts, and

                  (c)                 the composition of youth courts.

           (5)           Rules under subsection (4) may confer powers on the Lord Chancellor

with respect to any of the matters specified in the rules.

           (6)           Rules under subsection (4) may be made only after consultation with

35

the Criminal Procedure Rule Committee.

           (7)           Rules under subsection (4) are to be made by statutory instrument.

           (8)           A statutory instrument containing rules under subsection (4) is subject

to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of

Parliament.”

40

     (2)    Omit Schedule 2 to the 1933 Act (constitution of youth courts).

 

 

Courts Bill [HL]
Part 4 — Court security

    25

 

     (3)    Omit section 146 of the 1980 Act (rules relating to youth court panels and the

composition of youth courts).

     (4)    “The 1933 Act” means the Children and Young Persons Act 1933 (c. 12).

Part 4

Court security

5

 51    Court security officers

     (1)    A court security officer is a person who is—

           (a)           appointed by the Lord Chancellor under section 2(1) or provided under

a contract made by virtue of section 2(4), and

           (b)           designated by the Lord Chancellor as a court security officer.

10

     (2)    The Lord Chancellor may by regulations make provision as to—

           (a)           training courses to be completed by court security officers;

           (b)           conditions to be met before a person may be designated as a court

security officer.

     (3)    For the purposes of this Part a court security officer who is not readily

15

identifiable as such (whether by means of his uniform or badge or otherwise),

is not to be regarded as acting in the execution of his duty.

 52    Powers of search

     (1)    A court security officer acting in the execution of his duty may search—

           (a)           any person who is in, or seeking to enter, a court building, and

20

           (b)           any article in the possession of such a person.

     (2)    Subsection (1) does not authorise the officer to require a person to remove any

of his clothing other than a coat, jacket, headgear, gloves or footwear.

     (3)    In this Part “court building” means any building—

           (a)           where the business of any of the courts referred to in section 1 is carried

25

on, and

           (b)           to which the public has access.

 53    Powers to exclude, remove or restrain persons

     (1)    A court security officer acting in the execution of his duty may exclude or

remove from a court building, or a part of a court building, any person who

30

refuses—

           (a)           to permit a search under section 52(1), or

           (b)           to surrender an article in his possession when asked do so under

section 54(1).

     (2)    A court security officer acting in the execution of his duty may—

35

           (a)           restrain any person who is in a court building, or

           (b)           exclude or remove any person from a court building, or a part of a court

building,

            if it is reasonably necessary to do so for one of the purposes given in subsection

(3).

40

 

 

Courts Bill [HL]
Part 4 — Court security

    26

 

     (3)    The purposes are—

           (a)           enabling court business to be carried on without interference or delay;

           (b)           maintaining order;

           (c)           securing the safety of any person in the court building.

     (4)    A court security officer acting in the execution of his duty may remove any

5

person from a courtroom at the request of a judge or a justice of the peace.

     (5)    The powers conferred by subsections (1), (2) and (4) include power to use

reasonable force, where necessary.

 54    Surrender and seizure of articles

     (1)    If a court security officer acting in the execution of his duty reasonably believes

10

that an article in the possession of a person who is in, or seeking to enter, a

court building ought to be surrendered on any of the grounds given in

subsection (3), he must ask the person to surrender the article.

     (2)    If the person refuses to surrender the article, the officer may seize it.

     (3)    The grounds are that the article—

15

           (a)           may jeopardise the maintenance of order in the court building (or a part

of it),

           (b)           may put the safety of any person in the court building at risk, or

           (c)           may be evidence of, or in relation to, an offence.

 55    Powers to retain articles surrendered or seized

20

     (1)    Subject to subsection (2), a court security officer may retain an article which

was—

           (a)           surrendered in response to a request under section 54(1), or

           (b)           seized under section 54(2),

            until the time when the person who surrendered it, or from whom it was

25

seized, is leaving the court building.

     (2)    If a court security officer reasonably believes that the article may be evidence

of, or in relation to, an offence, he may retain it until—

           (a)           the time when the person who surrendered it, or from whom it was

seized, is leaving the court building, or

30

           (b)           the end of the permitted period,

            whichever is later.

     (3)    “The permitted period” means such period, not exceeding 24 hours from the

time the article was surrendered or seized, as will enable the court security

officer to draw the article to the attention of a constable.

35

 56    Regulations about retention of articles

     (1)    The Lord Chancellor may by regulations make provision as to—

           (a)           the provision to persons—

                  (i)                 by whom articles have been surrendered in response to a

request under section 54(1), or

40

                  (ii)                from whom articles have been seized under section 54(2),

 

 

Courts Bill [HL]
Part 5 — Inspectors of court administration

    27

 

                         of written information about the powers of retention of court security

officers,

           (b)           the keeping of records about articles which have been so surrendered

or seized,

           (c)           the period for which unclaimed articles have to be kept, and

5

           (d)           the disposal of unclaimed articles at the end of that period.

     (2)    “Unclaimed article” means an article—

           (a)           which has been retained under section 55,

           (b)           which a person is entitled to have returned to him,

           (c)           which has not been returned, and

10

           (d)           whose return has not been requested by a person entitled to it.

 57    Assaulting and obstructing court security officers

     (1)    Any person who assaults a court security officer acting in the execution of his

duty commits an offence.

     (2)    A person guilty of an offence under subsection (1) is liable on summary

15

conviction to—

           (a)           a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or

           (b)           imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months,

            or to both.

     (3)    A person who resists or wilfully obstructs a court security officer acting in the

20

execution of his duty commits an offence.

     (4)    A person guilty of an offence under subsection (3) is liable on summary

conviction to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale.

Part 5

Inspectors of court administration

25

 58    Inspectors of court administration etc.

     (1)    The Lord Chancellor may appoint such number of inspectors of court

administration as he considers appropriate.

     (2)    They are to be known collectively as “Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Court

Administration”.

30

     (3)    The Lord Chancellor must appoint one of the persons so appointed to be Her

Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Court Administration.

     (4)    In this Part that person is referred to as “the Chief Inspector”.

     (5)    The Lord Chancellor may make to or in respect of inspectors of court

administration such payments by way of remuneration, allowances or

35

otherwise as he may determine.

     (6)    In this Act—

           (a)           “CAFCASS” means the Children and Family Court Advisory and

Support Service, and

           (b)           “CAFCASS functions” means the functions of CAFCASS and its

40

officers.

 

 

 
previous section contents continue
 
House of Lords home page Houses of Parliament home page House of Commons home page search page enquiries

© Parliamentary copyright 2003
Revised 14 May 2003