'Unfair' judge costs millions

THE extraordinary failings of a Royal Court judge are likely to have cost taxpayers several million pounds.

Commissioner Sir Geoffrey Nice has been strongly criticised by the Privy Council for his unfair handling of the trial of St Helier-based accountant Peter Michel.

Mr Michel was jailed in 2007 for six years after being convicted of ten counts of money laundering. It was alleged that he used his financial expertise to launder the cash for criminals.

However, the council – the most senior court that Islanders can appeal to – this week quashed the conviction against him in a judgment which said that Sir Geoffrey had been snide and sarcastic and that he his actions had rendered the trial unfair.

'No one has found it possible to defend the Commissioner's conduct of this trial,' the council concluded.

• To read the full judgment: Click here

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