Article – Annemarie Thorby
The jury then came back just before 4.30 and their questions were answered. They had reached verdicts in relation to all the Firearm Charges, but could not reach a unanimous verdict on Count One, the charge of Participation in an Organised Criminal …Operation 8: Day 24, Tuesday March 20th
Questions from Jury
by Annemarie Thorby
In late afternoon the court went into Chambers for a few minutes.
The jury then came back just before 4.30 and their questions were answered. They had reached verdicts in relation to all the Firearm Charges, but could not reach a unanimous verdict on Count One, the charge of Participation in an Organised Criminal Group.
The judge then addressed the jury:
‘Madame Foreperson, Ladies and Gentlemen I have received your communication in which you have advised verdicts have been reached on Counts Two to Thirteen but unable to come to a unanimous decision on count One.’
‘It is to count One I want to address you now.’
‘I mentioned in the course of my summing up, that there are circumstances in which it is possible to come to a majority verdict. That is a verdict reached by all but one of you. In your case that would be then agreeing on a particular verdict. The possibility has been reached where it would be open to you to come to majority verdicts on Count One in relation to any of the accused.’
‘If you do not think that it is possible for ten of you to agree on a particular verdict in relation to any of the accused; I would ask you to let me know. If however you believe it is would be possible to reach a majority verdict in relation to all or any then you should continue your deliberations.’
‘You should in the first instance continue for the purpose of reaching unanimous verdicts but on the basis that could not be achieved then a majority verdict of ten to one could be reached…and would be effective in relation to any of the accused.’
‘If it were the case that a majority verdict is reached in relation to all or any, madam Foreperson, in that case you would be ask to confirm in open court that an unanimous verdict could not be reached but go onto say that a majority verdict could be.’
‘I hope I made it clear and ask you to retire and consider on the basis that in the first instance majority verdicts can be reached, if not you should advise me that a majority verdict could not be achieved.’
‘So on that basis could I ask you to retire again.’