Liberals say government to remove circuit courts from many rural communities

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Andrew Parsons. —Telegram file photo

The provincial government is planning to remove several circuit courts from rural communities in the province, Opposition justice critic Andrew Parsons said today in a news release.

Parsons, who also raised the issue in the House of Assembly Wednesday, said the move will restrict access to justice for people living in rural Newfoundland and Labrador.

“Closing circuit courts, particularly in rural communities, will have a huge effect on people who will have to travel long periods of time, including victims of crime and their families,” he said.

“This will be particularly difficult in the winter when people have to travel long distances and by ferry.”

Circuit courts hear all range of matters including criminal law, highway traffic, hunting and fishing offences and many others. Removing circuit courts in communities will mean huge barriers in accessing court services.

Geographic location: Newfoundland and Labrador

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Recent comments

  • phoney as a three dollar bill
    December 14, 2012 - 06:48

    circuit court, or do you mean kangeroo court with its phoney justice system and that phoney liberal document called the CHARTER OF RIGHTS & FREEDOMS which put criminals rights ahead of rights of victims.

  • NIK
    December 13, 2012 - 19:56


  • Bayman
    December 13, 2012 - 12:25

    Make sense. Fewer people living in the outports and more easy to get around now. No need to keep all these little court houses with a judge travelling by boat anywhere. It is a matter of reality, not government interference.

  • Jack
    December 13, 2012 - 11:09

    What makes the cuts to Circuit Courts more shocking is that Darin King is using the lame "Judicial Independence" excuse for applying these cuts. Obviously, this "Kangaroo Justice Minister" doesn't know what the concept of "Judicial Independence" means. "Judicial Independence" states that judges can make decisions without government interference, but this principle doesn't apply to physical courts and court houses. In other words, while government cannot interfere with a judge's decision, they do have a say in where to build or maintain courts and court houses, not unelected Judges and Chief Justices. Darin King, the next time you use "Judicial Independence" as an excuse for closing Circuit Courts, do some homework so you can learn what this term means.