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7 June, 2012

Competition finalists try cases of theft and Olympic forgery

Sixteen teams of school students will descend on Nottingham next weekend, each hoping to walk away victorious in this year's Magistrates' Court Mock Trial Competition.

Teenagers play lawyers in the Magistrates Court Mock Trial Competition

Teenagers play lawyers in the Magistrates' Court Mock Trial Competition

Each team must prosecute or defend two specially-written cases. Each trial is judged by a panel of real magistrates.

In R v Mitello, the defendant is charged with selling fake tickets for the Olympics Games.

In R v Low, an altercation at a newsagent's has led to a charge of handling stolen goods.

It has been a gruelling few months. Of the 380 successful entrants to this popular competition, 74 made it through to regional finals. 

And if that isn't enough, the winners of those must now face each other in our national final.

The students play the roles of lawyers, witnesses, magistrates and court staff. It takes a lot of preparation, as they need to be familiar with the cases and understand how the law applies to them.

It's no walk in the park. Around 800 magistrates and legal professionals volunteer to run the events and judge the cases.

Thorough preparation is vital if the students hope to convince these magistrates that they've got what it takes.

But this is not a prep school for young lawyers. Our mock trial competitions make the law accessible and tangible by exposing school students to its people and processes.

The students learn how the law protects people. They learn how hard it can be to find the truth, even if it looks obvious at first.

Sixteen finalists

Sixteen schools will compete in the final on 16 June.

Maybe you know someone involved?

The Bulmershe School Reading
Bushey Meads School Hertfordshire
Colyton Grammar School Devon
Farlingaye High School Suffolk
Frederick Gough School Scunthorpe
Hall Cross School Doncaster
Kendrick School Reading
King Edward VI Handsworth School Birmingham
Lady Hawkins School Hereford
Ormiston and Bolingbroke Academy Cheshire
Shoeburyness High School Essex
Southgate School Hertfordshire
St Dominic's Grammar School Belfast
Tiffin Girls’ School Surrey
Whitley Bay High School Tyne and Wear
Wolverhampton Girls High School Wolverhampton

The Magistrates' Court Mock Trial Competition is open to students in years eight and nine.

Older students can join our Bar National Mock Trial Comptetion, which is currently accepting entries.


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