Justices of the Peace

Judicial and administrative duties

Aberdeen Sheriff CourtClick to enlarge image

Justices of the peace are lay magistrates who sit with a legally qualified adviser to deal with summary criminal cases. There are around 450 justices, who are drawn from all walks of life. Justices sit either alone or on a treble bench and deal with many driving offences such as speeding, careless driving, tachograph offences and driving without insurance. They also deal with less serious assault, breach of the peace, theft and other less serious crimes.  Their powers of punishment are limited to 60 days’ imprisonment or a fine of up to £2,500 or both and to disqualify drivers on a discretionary basis.

The office of Justice of the Peace dates back to 1609, originally involving administrative, policing and judicial functions. The current justice of the peace courts were created in 2007 to replace district courts, which were operated by local authorities. The Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service is now responsible for the administration of Justice of the Peace courts, which are organised by sheriffdom rather than local authority area. Throughout their history, justices have remained lay people, dispensing criminal justice on a local basis.

Justices are appointed by Scottish Ministers for five-year periods on the recommendation of Justice of the Peace Advisory Committees.

For more information about becoming a Justice of the Peace click here.

HMA v ROBERT RICHARD HOGAN

Monday, 30 September, 2013
Sentencing Statements

At the High Court in Edinburgh Lord Doherty sentenced Robert Richard Hogan to 7 years 6 months imprisonment after he pled guilty to the attempted murder of a man in Edinburgh on 31 May 2013.

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HMA v PHILLIP HOGG

Friday, 27 September, 2013
Sentencing Statements

At the High Court in Edinburgh Lord Brodie sentenced Phillip Hogg to 12 months imprisonment for causing death by careless or inconsiderate driving and disqualified him from driving or applying for a driving licence for 3 years. James William Burns died on 7 September 2011 on the A70 Kilmarnock to Edinburgh road, near Carnwath.

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HMA v LEE ANDERSON

Friday, 27 September, 2013
Sentencing Statements

On 26 September 2013 at the High Court in Glasgow Judge Murphy QC sentenced Lee Anderson to 15 years imprisonment after he was found guilty of the culpable homicide of Javaid Akbar Ali in Paisley on 15 June 2012.

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HMA v SIMON IRVINE

Thursday, 26 September, 2013
Sentencing Statements

At the High Court in Edinburgh Lady Wise imposed an extended sentence on Simon Irvine after he was found guilty of assault and rape. The sentence is composed of a custodial period of 7 years followed by an extension period of 3 years.

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HMA v DAVID MCKENZIE

Friday, 20 September, 2013
Sentencing Statements

At the High Court in Glasgow Lord Matthews sentenced David McKenzie to six years and eight months in prison after he pled guilty to the supply of cocaine.

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