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Harry Potter and the solicitor's gown

Written by Sam O'Toole on 08 July 2015

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His Honour Judge David Wynn Morgan described a gown that had badges sewn on it as “resembling something out of Harry Potter” in Cardiff Crown Court last August. 

His Honour Judge David Wynn Morgan told Alan Blacker “If you ever appear before this court again dressed as you are I shall exercise my right to decline to hear you”, and reprimanded the solicitor advocate. 

The comment resulted in a complaint of judicial bias and was investigated by the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office.

In a statement the office said, “The Lord Chancellor and the president of the Queen’s Bench Division found that His Honour Judge David Wynn Morgan was entitled to challenge the appearance and status as a legal representative of Mr Alan Blacker, also known as Lord Harley, and this did not amount to misconduct.”

The office has issued His Honour Judge David Wynn Morgan with informal advice regarding how to deal with such situations in future.  It said that this was not a form of rebuke or disciplinary sanction.  

Mr Alan Blacker has a hereditary title. When he appears in the Crown court he uses his title. Mr Blacker has responded to the statement from the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office by accusing the judiciary of “snobbery”.

Good job Mr Blacker did not have his wand with him

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