Global Taxes

Justice delayed: a system on the brink

Tuesday 21 September 2021

In early 2021, a joint report from four criminal justice watchdogs found significant delays plaguing access to justice in England and Wales – with 54,000 unheard cases as of the beginning of the year. Some of these cases may not be heard until 2023 or even 2024.

As Dominic Raab becomes the eighth Justice Secretary in a decade, the challenge to address the record backlog and fix Britain’s broken justice system has never been more acute.

In this podcast, our speakers discuss the causes and impact of the backlog and the measures proposed to alleviate them, including reopening Crown courtrooms, expanding the Nightingale temporary court system until March 2022 and modifying 71 courtrooms to hold large, multi-hander trials.


  • Baroness Helena Kennedy QC, Director, IBA’s Human Rights Institute
  • Peter Csemiczky, criminal defence solicitor and partner, Hickman & Rose, London
  • Sara Carnegie, Director, IBA’s Legal Policy and Research Unit; former Director of Strategic Policy at the Crown Prosecution Service