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5 March, 2015

Leveson's inquiring mind to target ordinary school pupils in mock trial competition final

He prosecuted Rosemary West, he led the high-profile inquiry into press standards and, recently, he made recommendations that could lead to dramatic changes in our justice system. Now his intimidating attention falls on hopeful mock trial finalists. 'Mock' it may be, but with a judge like Lord Justice Leveson scrutinising them, the emphasis will be on 'trial'.

Lord Justice Leveson copyright Ministry of Justice
Lord Justice Leveson (photo: Ministry of Justice)

Around 270 young people from 18 schools across the UK have worked incredibly hard to win regional heats in our Bar National Mock Trial Competition.

But to clinch the coveted title of 'winner', they must travel to Edinburgh on Saturday 28 March to prosecute and defend cases on suspected theft and drug possession.

And they must do so at the Edinburgh Court of Session, in front of the likes of Lord Justice Leveson.

These youngsters are from all backgrounds. For many, this competition is their first, positive contact with the legal system that governs their lives. Public legal education such as this is a vital component in their development as effective citizens in the society they will shape.

Lord Justice Leveson joins other eminent legal professionals giving up their Saturday to help bring the law to life for young people. The Hon Lady Rae and the Rt Hon Lord Justice Davis are among others also presiding over the mock trial cases during the day.

And if that isn't enough, the young people will then be subjected to the sharp tongue of ITV's Judge Rinder, who will hand out the prizes.

As well as being challenging and fun for young people, this competition goes a long way to making the justice system relevant to them.

For many, it helps them understand the purpose of law - and how it impacts people's lives - before they're on the wrong side of it.

Look here for more information about the Bar National Mock Trial Competition.

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