Garrow’s Law

Tuesday, August 16, AD 2011

As faithful readers of this blog know, for my sins no doubt, I am an attorney.  Not having quite enough of the Law during my working hours, I am always on the lookout for good entertainment about lawyers and the law.  One of the best I have encountered in many a moon is a BBC series called Garrow’s Law.  This is a heavily fictionalized account of the trials, I know I should have resisted that, and tribulations of William Garrow, an Old Bailey, the chief criminal court of London, barrister, who on raw legal talent rose from nothing to become Solicitor General of England and Wales, Attorney General for England and Wales, a Judge, and a Privy Counselor.  He originated the phrase presumption of innocence, and first came to notice as a trail blazing defense counsel in regard to the rules of evidence, such as the rule against hearsay.

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5 Responses to Garrow’s Law

  • Will check it out, Don. After reading and watching Dickens’ Bleak House, which centered on the long-running but unresolved litigation in England’s Court of Chancery, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, I have never been unable to understand the intricacies of the law.

    I thought Rumpole wasn’t bad and Perry Mason had its moments. Having covered many criminal trials and hearings as a reporter over 30, including several murder cases, I must say that there is little real drama in the courtroom. Most of it consists of arcane exchanges between lawyers and judges and usually mundane testimony, especially from law enforcement officials who sound like they’re reading a TelePrompTer.

    I usually look for juror reactions to see how many yawns or suppressed smirks are elicited. That’s the best part.

  • amending previous…over 30 years…

  • BTW, Don, I don’t mean to threadjack but don’t know where else to put this: I watched John Rabe and it was excellent although a bit understated as to the horrors of the Rape of Nanking. I finished Chang’s powerful book and can now understand somewhat her subsequent battle with depression and then suicide. Having to relive all that clearly took its toll.

  • Don, is it true that money won in class action lawsuits, including attorney fees, is not considered “income” for tax purposes?

  • Tax law is one area of the law I wisely avoid Joe.