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Last Updated: Monday, 10 January, 2005, 13:05 GMT
Court filming reform 'uncertain'
Lord Falconer
Lord Falconer is ruling out a reform that might damage the justice process
A review of filming court cases will not necessarily lead to the ban being lifted, the Lord Chancellor has said.

Lord Falconer said the top priority was not to discourage witnesses from giving evidence.

He said it was possible that the consultation would back the current law which bars TV and radio from court.

"We are not making any proposals to change the current prohibition on broadcasts at the moment," he told a London court broadcasting conference.

"The way ahead may well be continuing the status quo."

'No media circus'

He added that the consultation would reach a conclusion in a couple of months and reforms would follow.

But he also underscored that the debate on whether to broadcast parliamentary sessions had taken 20 years "from the first consideration of the issue to when the first pictures were seen".

In past statements on the issue of filming trials, Lord Falconer said that while cameras in court would be a "big step" towards reinforcing public confidence in the justice system, he did not want court cases to be turned into "US-style media circuses".

Broadcasters have filmed cases at the Court of Appeal in London in November and December under a pilot scheme.

Programmes made with the footage from the pilots, which did not involve juries and witnesses, will form part of the evaluation process, but will not be broadcast.

How the system would work

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