Judge warned over drinking during a hearing break

It sounds all very Judge Deed!!

The Law Society Gazette

n employment judge has been formally reprimanded for appearing to have drunk alcohol midway through a day’s hearing.

According to a ruling of the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office (JCIO), employment judge Pauline Hughes was part of a panel of three tribunal members hearing a case in  2021. Midway through the day, following a break in the hearing, her fellow panel members became concerned about a change in her behaviour and said they believed she might be intoxicated.

Evidence indicated the judge had consumed alcohol in her chambers and as a result the hearing could not proceed to a conclusion.

When Hughes, who has not sat since the incident, was well enough to meet her tribunal president in August last year, she had little recollection of the incident but did not dispute that she must have consumed alcohol at work on that day.

A spokesperson for the JCIO said the senior president of tribunals, on behalf of the lord chief justice and with the lord chancellor’s agreement, had issued Hughes with a formal warning for misconduct.

They added: ‘In making a finding of misconduct and recommending a sanction of formal warning, the tribunal president took into account that Judge Hughes, who has served the tribunal for many years, had not sought to deny drinking alcohol, had expressed remorse for her actions and gave assurances as to her future conduct, including in relation to alcohol use.’

Read more at  https://www.lawgazette.co.uk/news/judge-warned-over-drinking-during-a-hearing-break/5114918.article?utm_source=gazette_newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=First+transparency+order+%7c+%27Failure+to+prevent%27+offence+%7c+Why+don%27t+more+solicitors+take+silk%3f_01%2f26%2f2023