How much faith do you have in our legal systems?

Losing Faith

By Adam Mitzner

Not as one might expect from the title about religion but about a person – Faith.

A person who knew too much and who threatened a man’s reason for living – his business, which in this case was a law firm and a Judge and thus corruption probable or real in the determining of sentencing for a lawyer’s clients.

Here we also have the system of how judges are promoted from one level of the judiciary to the next- is it by political favour? Or by their behaviour towards criminals whilst in court? Or by their personal life?

There was a long running series on British TV called Judge John Steed who was rather a ‘naughty’ man – in that he seemed to be constantly having affairs. The question was when was this behaviour acceptable and when wasn’t it? The series revolves around a central plot whereby the politicians and civil servants don’t like him as he a: doesn’t come from the ‘correct’ background in that he was not Eton educated etc; and b: he was a liberal or left-wing judge it was felt by the small ‘c’ conservatives in power in the Civil Service.

So why was he promoted? Was it the influence of his wife’s father who was also a judge? Unlikely, in that Steed was divorced for continuous adultery and again was ‘not quite the right sort of person’. But rather through popular opinion from when he was a Barrister defending the rights of his clients.

john steed

Now clearly the personal behaviour of a Judge is important – it must be seen not to influence judgements and also must not in fact do so. And when a lawyer is involved with a Judge then things become complicated.

I did enjoy this book, mainly because it rang true in its courtroom scenes and what happened within the law firm.  The legal aspects seemed correct as far as I can judge US law – not that I know that much about UK law either…

I would recommend this book to anyone who likes legal thrillers or courtroom dramas. 4 stars.

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