Cardiff Magistrates Court hit by coronavirus outbreak

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Cardiff Magistrates Court has been forced to close some courtrooms following a coronavirus outbreak.

It comes after, what officials insist, is “a small number” of court users tested positive and a number of staff members are now self-isolating.

The outbreak means fewer cases can be heard with delays expected to last for more than 10 days.

It comes as one solicitor’s body in London told members to stay away from “unsafe” hearings.

The court on Fitzalan Place typically hears dozens of cases each day, even through the coronavirus lockdown, but now it is understood mainly remand cases are being held.

The situation is under review and the court hopes to increase the number of open courts from January 25.

Cases will continue to be heard using the Cloud Video Platform.

Meanwhile, solicitors have been told it is “unsafe” to continue attending magistrates courts as calls grow for a partial shutdown of the justice system during the lockdown.

On Tuesday the London Criminal Courts Solicitors’ Association demanded that magistrates trials are halted except when defendants are being held in prison, with lawyers attending remotely.



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It comes as more than 180 new coronavirus cases were recorded in Cardiff on Thursday.

A HM Courts and Tribunals Service spokesman said: “Cardiff Magistrates Court continues to hear all urgent cases and carry out essential work.”



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