Children prosecuted for criminal offences will be dealt with either in the Youth Court, a specialist division of the magistrates’ court or at a Crown Court. The venue will very much depend on the seriousness of the alleged offence, with only the more serious incidents warranting Crown Court trial. The idea is that a Youth Court is specially geared to young people and deals with cases in a speedier and more sensitive fashion. One potential disadvantage is that they are denied the right to elect jury trial in a large number of cases.

Thanks to Andrew Keogh, criminal defence lawyer and editor of CrimeLine for his help with this section and an earlier version which appeared in A Parent’s Guide to the Law by Jon Robins (LawPack , 2009). We’re grateful also to Kim Evans for her help.

Profile photo of Jon Robins About Jon Robins
Jon is editor of the Justice Gap. He is a freelance journalist. Jon's books include The First Miscarriage of Justice (Waterside Press, 2014), The Justice Gap (LAG, 2009) and People Power (Daily Telegraph/LawPack, 2008). Jon is a journalism lecturer at Winchester University and a visiting senior fellow in access to justice at the University of Lincoln. He is twice winner of the Bar Council's journalism award (2015 and 2005) and is shortlisted for this year's Criminal Justice Alliance's journalism award

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