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Flawed decision to list cases in Luton, leaving Bedford Magistrates' Court mostly empty

It's disappointing to hear that the newly-appointed Judicial Business Group (JBG) has persisted with the flawed decision of its predecessor body, the Justices Issues Group, to list cases in Luton, leaving Bedford Magistrates' Court standing empty for much of the time.

Along with all Bedford Labour councillors, in October last year, I wrote the JBG expressing my concerns that the move to Luton Court was detrimental to the delivery of local justice.

The figures from Her Majesty's Court and Tribunals Service showed that in the new arrangements 10 per cent of cases were ineffective and a further 4 per cent were 'cracked' due to non-attendance of witnesses -- so these concerns were justified.

As with the initial consultation in February last year, the views of the public in Bedfordshire have been ignored. I've not even had the courtesy of a reply to my letter. I read the decision in the paper.

Cllr James Saunders

Kingsbrook

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