Whorlton Hall Prosecution – Verdicts

The jury returned to court shortly before quarter to four today, 27 April, having been retired to consider their verdicts since 11:30 yesterday. I’ve listed the charges below with the verdicts underneath them. Five of the defendants were found not guilty of any of the charges alleged against them, Sarah Banner, Karen McGhee, Niall Mellor, […]

Whorlton Hall Prosecution – Final legal directions

I had intended to report HHJ Smith’s Summing Up, which he gave yesterday. It started in the hour before the court adjourned for lunch, and continued after a break. When it continued I really struggled to hear, I don’t know what had happened and on occasion the sound has been a little patchy throughout this […]

Whorlton Hall Prosecution – Sabah Mahmood – Closing speech

The final closing speech was given late morning yesterday, 25 April, by Mr Paul Rooney for Sabah Mahmood. Mr Rooney started by telling the jury he had drawn the short straw, that they’d already had to listen to nine speeches and now they had to listen to his, but he said he would only be […]

Whorlton Hall Prosecution – John Sanderson – Closing speech

The penultimate closing speech was given by Mr Shaun Dryden on behalf of John Sanderson. He opened by explaining that he was addressing them eighth of all because his client was the eighth defendant, and he’d try not to cover ground his learned friends had already covered and he apologised in advance if he did […]

Whorlton Hall Prosecution – Darren Lawton – Closing speech

The first closing speech heard today, Tuesday 25 April, was from Ms Rebecca Brown for Darren Lawton. She checked that everyone could hear and started by saying that she really liked her job. I really like my job and I know that that makes me very lucky. One of the things I like most about […]

Whorlton Hall Prosecution – Niall Mellor – Closing speech

The final closing speech yesterday, Monday 24 April, was Mr Robin Patton for the sixth defendant Niall Mellor. Mr Patton opened by saying he’d try to avoid repetition and he’d been editing lots of things out of his speech so that the jury don’t hear it for the fourth or fifth time. He told the […]

Whorlton Hall Prosecution – Ryan Fuller – Closing speech

The half way point in the defendant’s closing speeches was occupied by Mr Christopher Knox for Ryan Fuller. [Mr Knox who addressed the jury after lunch on Monday 24 April, had a tendency towards the middle and end of his speech to move around somewhat, and raise his arms, which meant unfortunately I really struggled […]

Whorlton Hall Prosecution – Karen McGhee – Closing speech

After two closing speeches this morning, the court had a short break, before returning at midday for Mr Josh Normanton’s closing speech for Karen McGhee. He started by telling the jury that in early 2019 Ms McGhee was a recently trained nurse and that he wanted to open his speech by having a think about […]

Whorlton Hall Prosecution – Sarah Banner – Closing speech

The third closing speech we heard was from Mr Jonathan Walker on behalf of Sarah Banner. Mr Walker started by telling the jury that it doesn’t often happen, but that he’d got the distinct heebie jeebies and flashbacks when Ms Richardson addressed the court on Friday, he then expanded on her reference to George Orwell’s […]

Whorlton Hall Prosecution – Matthew Banner – Closing speech

The first counsel to address the jury this morning (24 April) was Mr Stephen Constantine for Matthew Banner. He didn’t have a microphone for his initial opening comments so I missed them, but when those in the dock alerted the court to the fact they were struggling to hear that was addressed. So ladies and […]