In the wake of the Black Lives Matter protests across the country, Justice Secretary Robert Buckland and Home Secretary Priti Patel announced the Friday before last that courts should be prepared for ‘fast-track’ prosecutions. What this will mean in practice has not yet been made explicitly clear, but they have suggested that individuals who commit vandalism, criminal damage or assault police officers will be ‘jailed within 24-hours’ of arrest to defuse disorder. As legal observers and members of Black Protest Legal Support, this knee-jerk reaction came as a surprise. We witnessed first-hand the peaceful nature of the protests, despite overwhelming police presence. We saw the indiscriminate use of kettling, and intimidation and violence from police not only against protestors but legal observers as well. But as criminal barristers from BAME backgrounds, we are sadly accustomed to the way in which the criminal justice system discriminates on the basis of skin colour.
Read more: Audrey Cherryl Mogan and Shina Animashaun, Justice Gap, https://is.gd/rzz7HO