Legal Aid

Jan Leeming

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Me looking brave before taking to the air (and the wing) of the plane. Wow, it was cold !! But the whole experience was totally exhilarating.



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Jan's Blog

Computers and the internet are amazing things. One of my concerns with putting together this site was that it could remain current, yet with all my travelling I've often much to say, but little time to say it. Years ago when reading the news it would take me days on end to reply to the kind letters people sent. Now, with the magic of the modern age, I can keep you up to date with what I'm doing and other events in my life.


Date: 9th June 2013


I’ve just read an article about Legal Aid - copied from The Spectator -  and the ‘Gravy Train’ it has become for Barristers – the article was written by a former Barrister so he must know what he is talking about.  (And I love the way he refers to the impoverished QC Cherie Blair complaining in a letter to the DT about the cuts in Legal Aid.  I think Mrs. Blair's firm made a fortune out of Legal Aid for Illegal Immigrants and together with her husband has just purchased their sixth property.  So much for Socialism!)

I wonder if Abu Hamsa or Abu Quatada have had to pay back any of their legal aid money!!!!! Silly question.

I ask because in 1993 my sister’s husband left her. I won’t go into the family linen on line but suffice to say she was advised to get Legal Aid to fight her case which she did. I think the Aid bill was something like £1,200. The next year and the year after she received a bill plus interest for the amount. She was unable to pay it and then it just slipped off the radar. Back then we were all paying phenomenal mortgages when the interest rate had at one time peaked at 15% and she had to borrow a hefty sum from our stepfather to keep herself afloat.

Two years ago, to try and cut down on expenditure and as she has no dependants, she decided to get rid of her mortgage and put the house into Equity Release. She then found that she had three ‘debts’ on her property, the mortgage, the money she owed the stepfather and a legal aid bill of over £5,000!! That was the original plus all the accrued interest over the years. My sister actually contacted Theresa May who she tells me was extremely helpful but it was to no avail and she had to pay back the money. She made the point to me that if they had allowed her to pay off the money monthly years ago, that she could have done but she’d had no contact from the Legal Aid people for over ten years.

So my point is this – why do the little people like my sister get hammered for payment when I imagine that people who have Legal Aid running into hundreds of thousands of pounds are not asked to pay it back.

Mind you I’m beginning to despair of so-called “British Justice” – once the envy of the world.

Now I’ve got that off my chest, I’m going to indulge in a few episodes of NCIS. I’ve never watched any of our Soaps in the whole of my life but I’m afraid I’m hooked on NCIS – I’m entranced by Mark Harmon who has the most gorgeous smile I’ve ever seen and love the characterisation and interplay between Agents de Noso, McGee and Ziva and also the wonderful cameos by Abby the absolutely cookie forensic scientist and Ducky the pathologist who talks to his ‘patients’ and can be dryly funny about them.


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