Jury trials scheduled to resume after an almost two-year absence

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Jury trials scheduled to resume after an almost two-year absence

Jury trials are now scheduled to resume after an almost two-year absence during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Judiciary announced the decision last in practice directions issued on Friday.

In a press release issued yesterday, the Judiciary noted that from today, judges and judicial officers may hold virtual, in-person, or hybrid hearings depending on what is required in the interest of justice.

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It stated that jurors will be socially distanced while listening to evidence in courtrooms and when deliberating privately on accused persons’ guilt or innocence.

“No jurors will be made to sit shoulder to shoulder with any other person,” the release said, as it noted that jurors will be required to immediately inform the judge, registrar and marshal if they are feeling unwell or were exposed to a COVID-19-positive person.

It stated that despite the conditional return to physical courtrooms, prisoners will have to continue to participate in their trials virtually, from video conferencing facilities at the country’s prisons.

The Judiciary also noted that court filings will continue to be done using e-filing portals.

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