Page:Statesman's Year-Book 1899 American Edition.djvu/381

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41
JUSTICE AND CRIME

justices of the peace for the county; while in Ireland they are presided over by a paid official, who must be a barrister, whose decision on points of law binds the court, who is appointed by the Crown, and who is also judge of the civil bill court of the county, which corresponds to the English county court. The assizes are presided over by one of the common law judges of the High Court of Justice. In the quarter sessions, recorder's court, and assizes the trial is by jury in all cases save appeals from petty sessions. Under the Crimes Act witnesses and persons suspected of crime may be interrogated before a secret court of inquiry; but admissions then made are not evidence against the persons making them. Prisoners may be convicted before two resident magistrates specially appointed to hear cases under the Crimes Act, and in cases where the sentence exceeds a month, convicted persons have a right of appeal to the county chairman at quarter sessions. The number of criminal offenders committed for trial and convicted, in each of the three kingdoms, was as follows in five years:—

England and Wales.

Year Committed for Trial Convicted Males Females Total 1893 1894 1895 1896 1897 10,648 10,519 10,018 9,833 9,931 1,646 1,636 1,602 1,379 1,411 12,296 12,155 11,621 11,214 11,342 9,797 9,634 9,169 8,856 8,991

Scotland.

Year Committed for Trial Convicted Males Females Total 1893 1894 1895 1896 1897 2,010 1,984 1,711 1,781 1,865 384 387 316 339 337 2,394 2,371 2,027 2,120 2,202 1,903 1,937 1,652 1,704 1,796

Ireland.

Year Committed for Trial Convicted Males Females Total 1893 1894 1895 1896 1897 1,994 2,026 1,535 1,754 1,609 245 382 240 301 276 2,239 2,408 1,755 2,055 1,885 1,378 1,469 1,096 1,310 1,242