Judge Rin­der’s Crime sto­ries

Judge Rin­der on why real po­lice in­ves­ti­ga­tions and court­rooms are very dif­fer­ent from what we see on the box

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Mon-fri / itv

I’ll never watch Sher­lock in the same way again af­ter we talked to Robert ‘Judge’ Rin­der about how real-life crime dif­fers from TV dra­mas – al­though I can’t be­lieve Robert doesn’t bring a lit­tle drama to his court­room. See

NEW doc­u­men­tary Judge Rin­der’s Crime Sto­ries mon-fri / itv / 2.00pm

Le­gal and crime dra­mas are very pop­u­lar, but how well do they por­tray our jus­tice sys­tem? Few peo­ple are bet­ter placed to weigh the ev­i­dence for and against than Robert ‘Judge’ Rin­der. As well as be­ing a crim­i­nal bar­ris­ter, Robert pre­sides over civil cases in pop­u­lar court­room show Judge Rin­der and, this week, re­turns with a new se­ries of Judge Rin­der’s Crime Sto­ries, which delves into real-life crim­i­nal cases. Episode one in­cludes the first TV in­ter­view with Michael Philpott, whose father Mick was found guilty of the man­slaugh­ter of six of his younger chil­dren in a fire in 2012.

Here, 2016 Strictly star Rob, 39, re­veals six ways TV gives a false pic­ture of the law… Ian Mace­wan

1 Real tri­als can be very dull

‘How­ever, TV shows have a short time in which to tell a dra­matic story, so there are mo­ments when you watch a le­gal drama and think, “This is to­tally bonkers!” I’ve watched episodes of Judge John Deed and The Good Wife, where the rules of ev­i­dence or ethics have gone out the win­dow. It doesn’t mean it’s not en­ter­tain­ing – it’s just bark­ing mad!’

2 Foren­sic teams don’t try to crack the case

‘The crit­i­cal role of foren­sic teams is that they have to be in­de­pen­dent, so that they can ap­ply their minds

fairly. If they start to be­come

in­volved in the in­ves­ti­ga­tion, like they do in Silent Wit­ness, then very quickly their minds be­come pretty closed.’

3 Crim­i­nal bar­ris­ters don’t ‘show­boat’

‘What we bar­ris­ters are try­ing to do is per­suade the jury with facts. That doesn’t mean that some­times you can’t have re­ally pow­er­ful mo­ments – I’ve been in­volved in lots of cases where that has hap­pened.’

4 . Po­lice work is mun­dane

‘An in­ci­dent room on a mur­der case in­volves an enor­mous num­ber of man hours and a huge num­ber of per­son­nel. One small slip-up could mean the ev­i­dence is not ad­mis­si­ble in court, so ev­ery­thing has to be con­ducted with mil­i­tary pre­ci­sion. It’s a world away from the likes of Poirot – how would any of his state­ments be ad­mis­si­ble in court?!’

5 Crime is not a game of Cluedo

‘There’s a lot of tele­vi­sion drama in which we see Sher­lock Holmes-like in­ves­ti­ga­tions [Robert is a close friend of Sher­lock star Bene­dict Cum­ber­batch] and, at the other end of the scale, Miss Marplestyle cases. They are all about the in­ves­ti­ga­tion and the killer, and that’s the end of it. But true crime is much more gritty, and has a far more pro­found and last­ing


6 Tri­als don’t hap­pen soon af­ter the crime

‘TV mas­sively dis­torts the re­al­ity, which is that most tri­als hap­pen a min­i­mum of six months af­ter the events have taken place. All the rules that have to be ap­plied ahead of a trial take a long time, not to men­tion the fact that courts are over­loaded with cases, so there’s al­ways go­ing to be a wait­ing pe­riod.’

Judge Rin­der’s Crime sto­ries

Is PRE­VIEWED on pages 52-53

martin Shaw as Judge John deed david Suchet as Poirot Sher­lock’s Bene­dict Cum­ber­batch

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