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Brunel Law students take part in professional advocacy training exercise

Students from Brunel Law School and the Brunel Law (student) Society have taken part in a complex advocacy training exercise directed at advocates from the Service Prosecuting Authority (SPA), as part of an intense induction programme over several weeks.

The students played the roles of witnesses, the complainant and the defendant, and acted as members of the ‘jury’ (the Board), in a court martial trial for a fictitious assault case.

They were examined in chief by the SPA prosecution and cross-examined by the SPA advocates who had prepared the defence case.

An experienced lawyer and spokesperson from the SPA who was in attendance at the fictitious ABH trial said: “The law students performed wonderfully. They clearly put significant effort into learning their parts and, when they gave evidence, each one of them was genuinely different and so natural that it gave the trial a real sense of believability.

He added: “the verdict could have gone either way.”

The trial took place at Brunel Law School’s moot court. The proceedings were presided by acting Judge Advocate Mr Bruce Houlder CB QC DL, the first and former Director of the SPA (2009-2013). The current Director of Service Prosecutions, Mr Andrew Cayley CMG QC, was in attendance at the event along with several senior officers from the SPA.

Also in attendance were sixth form students from Uxbridge High School, accompanied by their teacher Yiola Rizava. After the event, the sixth formers had an opportunity to ask the Law Society students about their experience of the trial, and of studying at Brunel.

The event marked the continuation of a collaboration between Brunel University London and the SPA that was initiated in 2014-15 by Vice Chancellor and President Julia Buckingham and the Director of the SPA, with the assistance of the Associate Dean of the College of Business, Arts and Social Sciences Dr Dimitrios Giannoulopoulos.