Imagine for some reason you need to go to court and also need Legal Aid and found that you couldn’t turn to a Solicitor who you knew and trusted but found that one was appointed for you.
Apparently what may be on this what when new rules on Legal Aid come into force
“The subsidiary of the haulage firm Eddie Stobart has emerged as a leading contender in bidding for a new generation of criminal legal aid contracts that would deprive defendants of the right to choose their own solicitor.Lawyers are planning protests outside parliament in opposition to the Ministry of Justice’s proposals, which aim to cut fees, reduce funding of judicial reviews and save a further 220m out of the legal aid budget.The row within the legal profession over the plans is intensifying. The head of Stobart Barristers has described traditional law firms who rely on legal aid as “‘wounded animals waiting to die“ Guardian 8th May 2013 Trevor Howarth, its legal director, said the firm would be bidding for the new criminal defence contracts. “We can deliver the service at a cost that’s palatable for the taxpayer,” he said. “Our business model was developed with this in mind.”We at Stobart are well known for taking out the waste and the waste here is the duplication of solicitors going to the courtroom. At the moment there are 1,600 legal aid firms; in future there will be 400. At Stobart, we wouldn’t use 10 trucks to deliver one product.” Howarth said he had received emails from solicitors with the heading “Truck Off”. He added : “I have already taken calls from barristers on our panels who say they have been contacted by solicitors telling them they won’t use them again if they take instructions from us.”On removing a defendant’s right to choose their solicitor, Howarth said: “I don’t think the lack of choice is damaging. People are not entitled to access justice with an open cheque. No one is stopping them paying for their own choice of solicitor.” Soliciters in Wales have warned that UK Government changes to legal aid will result in miscarriages of justice and the closure of high street
Members of the legal profession lobbied the Wales Office about the impact they claim cost-saving proposals from the Ministry of Justice will have on people throughout the nation.
Mark Davies of Swansea-based Goldstones Solicitors, said:
It is planned that 21 contracts will be awarded to provide legal aid criminal services in Wales nine in South Wales and four each in Dyfed-Powys, Gwent and North Wales.
Describing the challenges of serving Dyfed-Powys, he said:
It s 4,700 square miles. It s a huge area. To put that into context, if you get arrested in Newtown and the lawyer that has the contract is based in Haverfordwest, it s going to take over two and a half hours just to get that lawyer over there and back; it s a 130 mile round-trip. What we are going to have is effectively the death of the high street firm. Western Mail 21st May 2013 Lynda Roberts of Porthmadog-based Breese Gwyndaf Solicitors feared that today s standards of Welsh language provision would disappear if services are provided by a few large companies.
Ms Roberts is also alarmed that in most criminal cases clients will lose the ability to change their representation.
Describing the importance of ensuring that people in Welsh speaking areas could access advice in their first language, she said
: Client choice is paramount… The provision of advice is essential in the Welsh language in those areas. Speaking in the Commons, Conservative Justice Secretary Chris Grayling said: I have absolutely no intention of ending up with a legal aid market dominated by a small number of very large firms.”A central part of the tendering process will involve a quality threshold that ensures that we have the quality of advocacy and litigation support in this country that we need and expect. He added: We must ensure that every defendant, innocent or guilty, has access to a proper defence. We also need a system that is affordable at a time of great financial stringency. The Fear is that (though some will say the definite result) is that the changes will be on Legal aid will be defended by young inexperienced solicitor and there will be increased miscarriages of justice through inept defence or the firm with an eye on the costs will persuade defendants to plead guilty
How many MPs and Lords who support this measure have or (ever will) needed Legal Aid ?
This is truly frighting move that could see a further difference between those who can afford a decent defence and a difference between acquittal rates based on ability to pay.
Cranberry s fleet of police vehicles is getting a new look.
The truck will cost $28,780, which Cranberry Sgt. Chuck Mascellino said is about the same cost as a new sports utility vehicle. The department typically replaces its vehicles once they reach more than 100,000 miles, Mascellino said.
As for why the department chose to go with a truck instead of another SUV, the answer is simple more room.
Mascellino said the bed in the pickup truck would give officers more ability to haul bikes, dogs cages, vehicle parts and other items
In the past, officers have used their personal vehicle, or gotten the township s public works department to assist them, when they were unable to load items into their police vehicles. Police cruisers are filled almost to capacity with computers, a prisoner partition and other equipment, according to Public Safety Director Jeff Schueler.
The one thing we have lacked is the ability to haul certain items, Mascellino said. Even in an SUV, you don t have room to haul something like a bike,
Mascellino said the truck also has more room in the interior compared to an SUV.
Cranberry would be one of the first departments in the area to utilize the pickup truck as a police vehicle.
Franklin Township in Beaver County also has a Ford F-150 for its police department and Mascellino said Cranberry has received positive feedback on it from Franklin officers.
Several other employees of the township also have them as personal vehicles, he said.
The Ford-150 will be ordered by the end of the month. Once the truck is outfitted for the department, it could be on the road by early fall, Mascellino said.
The truck may also be reused in Cranberry when the police department readies to replace it in the future. Mascellino said the F-150 could be transferred to the township s parks and recreation or public works for use by those departments.
We do have a lot of second life for our vehicles, Mascellino said. They ve been well maintained throughout the first 100,000 miles we use them.
Cranberry supervisors also authorized the police department to buy two Dodge Charges to replace two of the department s older Ford Crown Victorias. The cost for the two Chargers is $55,070.
Mascellino noted Ford stopped making Crown Victorias last year. After officers test-drove both the Chevy Caprice and the Charger as possible replacements, the department decided to go with the Charger again because of space.
It really is a tight fit, Mascellino said of the Caprice. The Chargers have a little bit more room.
Thoughts on the police department getting a Ford F-150 and Chargers? Share them in the comment section below.
One year after a car carrying San Juan Capistrano teacher Kelli Groves and her two daughters dangled perilously from a Santa Barbara County bridge, her family has sued the trucking company over the deadly accident.
On Jan. 12, 2012, Groves was driving her then-10-year-old daughter, Sage, and 10-week-old girl, Mylo, to Mission San Luis Obispo when the 2001 BMW she had borrowed was clipped from behind by a big rig owned by R&R Auto Wrecking of Arroyo Grande1.
The truck went barreling over the side of a bridge just south of Buellton, sending driver Charles Allison Jr. to his death. Groves car somehow managed to jam into the railing, but was left hanging off the bridge.
Their rescue is a story of one miracle after another that attracted worldwide attention2 after a battalion of Navy Seabees happened on the scene with the perfect, heavy-duty forklift needed to stabilize the car, allowing firefighters to extricate the girls and their mom.
In a lawsuit filed last week in San Luis Obispo County, lawyers for the Groves family want to hold the trucking company responsible for negligence in maintaining and operating the truck and hiring Allison as a driver.
R&R Auto Wrecking couldn’t be reached for comment.
That Allison was driving a tractor-trailer truck while high on methamphetamine was willful, deliberate, intentional, reckless, despicable, the lawsuit states.
Sadly, the driver of the big rig involved in this collision had a long history of drug and illegal substance abuse, said Wylie Aitken, one of the Santa Ana-based lawyers handling the case for the Groves.
Aitken said Allison had several previous run-ins with the law for drug possession and driving under the influence.
It is shocking that a trucking company would even hire and allow someone suffering from such addiction problems to drive a vehicle capable of so much harm to others, Aitken said.
The suit does not name a specific dollar amount sought for damages but does indicate Groves and her daughters suffered severe injuries and said Groves was unable to return to her teaching job at Del Obispo Elementary4.
Just after 11 p.m. Saturday, Mejia was heading north on I-280 near the interstate Highway 380 connector in San Bruno when his car slammed into a concrete wall on the freeway, the CHP said.
Mejia, 51, a longtime San Bruno resident, was pronounced dead at the scene, and investigators are trying to determine whether he died solely due to injuries suffered in the crash or for medical reasons.
Mejia grew up in San Bruno and was the son of immigrants from the Mexican state of Sonora Issac Mejia Sr. and Herlinda Mejia who opened Don Pico’s2 in 1975. The restaurant was a small operation until Mejia took over the restaurant in 1999. He brightened the look of the restaurant, updated the kitchen and added his own touch to the menu.
Don Pico’s is now an institution in the city.
Recently, the restaurant underwent another remodeling3, and the exterior of the building was updated, the restaurant was expanded in size, and a second dining room and bar were added. Mejia also adorned the restaurant with a number of antique items, including chandeliers made from Austrian crystal from the San Francisco Ferry Building, a trophy fish from Bing Crosby s private collection and a 1925 mahogany Brunswick bar from the San Francisco Cliff House an extension of his love for art and design.
Just down the street from Don Pico’s is Mejia’s second San Bruno restaurant, The Rib Shack.
In addition to being a restauranteur, Mejia was very active in the business and volunteer community. He has been involved with the San Bruno Chamber of Commerce for years, and he was a dedicated member of the San Bruno Lions Club.
One of the things Mejia was always known for was his willingness to serve others.
“He was one of the most magnanimous people I’ve ever met,” said Mel Phillips, a past president of the San Bruno Lions Club. “He was willing to help everybody.”
Mejia leaves behind a wife and a daughter.
It s getting to be that time of the year again, and no, I m not talking about the elections. Football is returning to America s stadiums and televisions, and not a minute too soon there s only so much golf and tennis you can take to pass the time. Yeah, I know baseball is king during the summer, but for some reason, even though I love going to see a game in person, I ve never really enjoyed sitting in front of the TV watching a non-playoff game. Sorry. I m not really a big apple pie fan, either. But I do love America and hot dogs, so that s gotta count for something.
Anyway, back to football, and here comes the inevitable tie-in to the world of trucking after all, this is a trucking Website, and if I can t find anything to say about trucking in this blog, it really doesn t belong here. But when you think about it, football and trucking have plenty in common; while an offense hauls a ball from one side of the field to another to score points, truckers haul commodities from Point A to Point B to earn money.
Good lord, you re saying. That s really a stretch. Hang on, it s going to get thinner. Sure, there s a defense that tries to keep the offense from accomplishing its goal, and in trucking, fleets have to overcome obstacles such as driver turnover, capacity issues, fuel prices, logistics the list goes on. Seriously, that sounds to me like a tougher challenge than running the ball against the Baltimore Ravens, but hey, I never had to stare Ray Lewis in the face, so what do I know?
Anyway, enjoy fall football 2012 I know I will. And keep on trucking for those touchdowns.
July 04, 2012 (LBO) Sri Lanka s John Keells Holdings PLC has inked a deal to sell its freight forward unit in Colombo and India to France-based Norbert Dentressangle SA, both firms said in a statement.
The acquisition will enable Norbert Dentressangle to strengthen its growing freight forwarding business, in line with its strategy, Colombo-based John Keells said in a brief statement on Wednesday. The transaction is due to be finalised by end-August.
Conglomerate John Keells, which also has investments ranging from leisure, financial services and ports, did not disclose the sale price.
Norbert Dentressangle said the freight forward operation to be acquired, has 120 people on its payroll and reported revenues of nearly 10 million dollars in 2011. The company has a network of six-offices in India, covering the main coastal regions, plus another two in Sri Lanka.
After the acquisition of APC Beijing International in China at the end of 2011, the acquisition of a reliable, recognised major Indian and Sri Lankan freight forwarding player means the Asian continent is now well served by the Group s operations, Norbert Dentressangle said.
Norbert Dentressangle s freight forwarding business now has a network of 50 offices and 600 employees operating in 12 countries on three-continents.