Judge has to halt court hearing as ‘loud and obvious’ pornography is heard playing through a solicitor’s computer
- A judge had to halt court when ‘noisy’ porn erupted from a solicitor’s computer
- Lawyer says his computer was hacked while in session at Sheffield Crown Court
- Sounds came through the legal common video platform software used by courts
- Recorder Judge Richardson, KC, has now adjourned the case for a week
Recorder Judge Richardson halted court when ‘noisy’ porn started playing over CVP
A recorder judge in Sheffield was forced to call time on a drug-smuggling case after ‘loud and obvious’ porn noises started blaring from a solicitor’s computer.
Judge Jeremy Richardson adjourned for a week after the court’s common video platform (CVP) was ‘hacked’, The Times reported.
CVP allows court sessions to be held remotely, like other video link software.
The lawyer, anonymous, said ‘it’s so strange how easily you can be hacked these days.’
13 defendants have been charged with smuggling drugs and a phone into jail.
One barrister attending said: ‘It was definitely porn. Everybody in court heard it.
‘It was loud and obvious.
‘The judge tried to tell the person making the sounds to mute their microphone.
‘When it continued the judge got upset and abruptly ended the hearing for a week and said future hearings could not be done on CVP.’
Virtual hearings have become more common since the pandemic, creating their own issues
Remote and ‘hybrid’ court sessions have become a more common practice since the pandemic.
In February last year, a Texas lawyer had similar frustrations when appearing remotely in court with a cat filter over his face.
Attorney Rod Ponton told the judge: ‘I am not a cat.’
Judges in the UK can decide on in-person, remote or hybrid attendance based on the broad ‘interests of justice’.
Still, the jury is out on whether remote hearings make a good alternative to in-person court sessions.
Post-pandemic, 51% of judges in the UK thought remote hearings were effective at creating an environment.
Judge Richardson, KC, said: ‘While everything is better when everyone is in court, I can do twice as many cases with CVP’.
He has asked for barristers from now on to attend most hearings in person.