More than 60 budding legal eagles will descend on Mansfield Magistrates Court on Saturday 21st April to take part in the 2015 Magistrates’ Court Mock Trial competition.
Groups of 12-14 year olds from across the East Midlands will take on the roles of lawyers, witnesses, magistrates, court staff and a defendant in the 20th annual competition, which is run by the Citizenship Foundation in partnership with the Magistrates’ Association.
The students will enact a specially written case in which the defendant stands accused of dishonestly receiving a stolen mobile phone.
The competition enables students to learn about all aspects of the criminal justice system - the law, procedures, consequences and the staff – and to develop confidence in personal skills such as public speaking, analysis techniques and working as a team.
Local magistrates, law students and other legal professionals help the teams prepare by giving information on the everyday workings of magistrates’ courts and hosting court visits. Students may also take part in the court reporter and court artist competitions.
The Mansfield local heat will host 5 schools, on Saturday March 21st including students from Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Staffordshire. 54 heats are taking place nationwide over the next 3 weeks, followed by regional finals in May before the prestigious national final at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court in June 2015.