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School of Law launches the Miscarriages of Justice Review Centre

(30 November 2017)

The School of Law has launched the Miscarriages of Justice Review Centre, where volunteer students will aim to find evidence that will assist in making an application for a person’s case to be reviewed for referral back to the Court of Appeal.

Professor Claire McGourlay will lead a group of 17 Students who will be re-investigating cases of convicted people maintaining their innocence, who have exhausted the initial appeals process.  As legal aid isn’t always available to people maintaining their innocence and continuing to appeal, our students could make a real difference, by offering their services free of charge. 

The students will undertake real-client work, including interviewing the alleged innocent victims, their families, friends and witnesses, writing reports for solicitors and barristers, organising exhibits for a trial or having meetings with forensic scientists.  All their work is supervised and supported at each stage by practicing lawyers and the Centre will work closely with Inside Justice and Garden Court North Chambers.

The centre was launched at a recent event hosted by the Legal Advice Centre (LAC) to celebrate the work done by our volunteers, both practitioners and students. Professor Toby Seddon, Head of the School of Law, introduced the evening by explaining how important the LAC is to the social responsibility agenda of the School and the value of the work it does. Christine Peacock, Legal Advice Centre Manager, then looked back at the Centre’s successes in the last year; including the nomination of Senior Lecturer Neil Allen, for the Bar Pro Bono Unit Award.

The LAC is run by the School of Law to give free legal advice to members of the public who are not able to access legal advice elsewhere, and to provide hands-on experience of legal issues for our students and the opportunity for them to develop key legal skills.