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Martin, Johnston & Socha Insights

Criminal Law news & updates from Martin, Johnstone & Socha's expert criminal defence solicitors.

Accused of revenge porn? What you need to know

With an increasing number of platforms available to upload photographs, it has now become second nature for people to share moments of their life on a weekly, daily and even hourly basis. While there is no law against how many images you can take and distribute, it’s important to know what material could result in a criminal conviction.

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Fraud in Scotland - Your questions answered

With an increased reliance on technology coupled with a financially challenging time for many, it’s no surprise the number of fraud cases continues to rise. In fact, the latest Scottish Government’s data revealed a 60% year-on-year increase in fraud cases compared with January 2020.

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How is the criminal justice system adapting to the coronavirus pandemic?

While all areas of business are affected by the COVID-19 outbreak, essential services such as courts and tribunals must ensure minimal disruption to the lives of the public. The criminal justice system is an integral part of society, and as a result, has had to adapt and adopt new working methods to continue running. 

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438 Hits

Coronavirus: The possible future of criminal proceedings via video links

The COVID-19 outbreak has required organisations all over the world to adapt to new ways of working. The Scottish Criminal Courts are in the same position, and as an essential service, the courts must adopt modern technology to continue to function. However, unlike other businesses, the courts face the distinct challenge of balancing the right to a fair trial, with dispensing justice. 

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Domestic Abuse and the Law in Scotland: A Guide

In a previous article we discussed the ground-breaking domestic abuse legislation that came into force in Scotland in 2019. The law introduced last year recognises domestic abuse crime. If it can be proven that a person has engaged in abusive behaviour towards a current or former partner, they can be prosecuted and charged with the offence.

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Martin, Johnston & Socha shortlisted as a finalist in the Scottish Legal Awards 2020 for Criminal Defence Team of the Year

We are proud to announce that Martin, Johnston & Socha have received a nomination for Criminal Defence Firm of the Year at the 2020 Scottish Legal Awards.

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504 Hits

Drinking and driving over Christmas - is it worth it?

Recent research from Confused.com revealed more than half of UK motorists will be going to a Christmas party this month, meaning there is a higher level of temptation than usual to drive home after a few glasses of alcohol. A shocking 5,000 people were caught driving under the influence of alcohol last December; which is the equivalent to more than 160 people a day.

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498 Hits

Review of The Domestic Abuse (Scotland) Act

In April 2019, ground breaking legislation criminalising psychological abuse and coercive and controlling behaviour came into force in Scotland. The Domestic Abuse (Scotland) Act 2018 has now been in effect for six months and has been supported by a widespread public awareness campaign to encourage understanding of the type of behaviour which may amount to domestic abuse under the new laws.

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First public consultation of its kind to 'demystify' Scotland's sentencing process

The Scottish Sentencing Council will reveal how judges arrive at their sentencing decisions and will ask criminal justice organisations, charities, academics, and the wider public if they agree.

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A quarter of millennials look at social media while driving

Recent research from Privilege Car Insurance revealed that 23 per cent of 18 to 34-year-olds cannot resist using their phones to check their social media accounts when behind the wheel. This dangerous obsession with mobiles has also led to 28 per cent of millennials reading and sending text messages while driving.

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Firearm offences in Scotland at a record low

According to the latest data, there were 348 firearm offences recorded in Scotland during 2017-18, a drop of one per cent from the previous year (350 offences) and 13 per cent from 2015-16 (402 offences); the lowest figure since records began in 1980.

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Police Scotland announces new campaign to combat online child abuse

#StopItNow is the new hard-hitting campaign from Police Scotland that directly addresses predators who attempt to engage with children online for sexual purposes.

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Panel to review how sexual offence trials are conducted in Scotland

The Lord President, Lord Carloway, has commissioned a review of how Scottish courts conduct rape and other sexual offence cases. Lord Carloway hopes to develop proposals on how to improve the way cases are handled for complainers and witnesses, without compromising the rights of the accused.

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Domestic abusers to be heard in Glasgow's Alcohol Court

From next month, the Glasgow Sheriff Court Alcohol Court is to deal with domestic abuse cases in which alcohol ‘significantly contributed to the offending’.

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619 Hits

The 'most comprehensive package ever' to tackle domestic abuse announced by Government

On Monday 21st January 2019, the landmark draft Domestic Abuse Bill was published, aimed at pursuing offenders and supporting victims and their families. The Bill comes after it is revealed domestic abuse costs the country £66 billion a year and is said to provide a ‘once-in-a-generation’ opportunity to transform how the UK responds to domestic violence.

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Martin, Johnston & Socha Nominated for Criminal Defence Firm of the Year at Scottish Legal Awards 2019


We are proud to announce that Martin, Johnston & Socha have received a nomination for Criminal Defence Firm of the Year at the 2019 Scottish Legal Awards. This distinction is a welcome recognition to the dedication of our specialist team of criminal defence solicitors and we look forward to the results which will be announced at the awards ceremony on 21st March.

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Study recommends ban on declaring criminal convictions on job applications

A study conducted by the Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research (SCCJR) has found that having to declare criminal convictions on job applications often deters candidates from applying, and is not the most effective way of predicting the risk of reoffending.

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669 Hits

£8.5 million investment into services for victims of rape and sexual assault

The Scottish Government has announced £8.5 million in funding over three years to improve services for sexual crime victims, such as forensic medical examinations.

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Slight rise in domestic abuse cases on previous year

The Scottish Government has released a new report that highlights the characteristics of victims and perpetrators of domestic abuse acts in Scotland. During the 2017-18 period, 59,541 incidents of domestic abuse were recorded by the police in Scotland; an increase of one per cent on 2016-17.

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Festive Opening Hours at Martin, Johnston & Socha

As the holiday approaches we would like to take this opportunity to inform valued clients and potential new customers of our Christmas opening hours - we will be closed on the following dates -:

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