Saturday, March 9, 2019

Horizon trial menu

The Horizon trial is the second trial in the Bates and others v Post Office group litigation at the High Court. It started on Mon 11 March 2019 at the Rolls Building in London. Mr Justice Fraser is presiding.

The trial was adjourned on Thu 21 March due to an application made by the Post Office to recuse (sack) the judge (see "Going Postal"). This was heard on Wed 3 April, and judgment was handed down on Tue 9 April.

In the recusal application judgment, the judge refused to recuse himself, and ordered the final day of factual evidence be heard on Thu 11 April, which it was (see below). The expert evidence section of the trial is now scheduled to start on 4 June.

The first trial in this litigation was the Common Issues trial. You can navigate the Common Issues trial menu here or via the menu bar at the top of this blow.

The following links will connect you with the transcripts, witness statements and reports filed during the course of the Horizon trial.

If you want to know what this whole litigation is about, if you're a lawyer please read the Claim particulars (filed on behalf of the 550+ claimants) and the Generic defence and counterclaim - filed on behalf of the Post Office. If you're not a lawyer, you might be better off reading the "About" section of this blog which explains the story, and my involvement as a journalist.

So, here we go: 

Horizon trial documents, reports, transcripts and live tweets

Pre-trial review and judgment (14 Feb 2019), in which the Post Office tries and fails to limit the evidence of Ian Henderson from Second Sight.

Day 1 - Monday 11 March - QC openings

Write-up: "Post Office IT "not fit for purpose""
Live tweets from court

Claimants' written opening
Post Office written opening

Bonus material:
My thoughts on Horizon's "Robustness"
Daily Mail article
FT article
Computer Weekly piece

Day 3 - Wed 13 March - Second day of claimant witnesses

Write-up: "Patny, Burke and Roll"
Live tweets from court - morning
Live tweets from court - afternoon

Aakash Patny witness statement
Angela Burke witness statement
Richard Roll witness statements

Day 4 - Thu 14 March - Final day of claimant witnesses

Write-up: "They could, and they did, change branch transaction data."
Live tweets from court - morning.
Live tweets from court - afternoon.

Ian Henderson's witness statement.

Bonus material:
Why did the Post Office accuse Aakash Patny of false accounting in court?

Thu 15 March - the Common Issues trial judgment was handed down.

Day 5 - Monday 18 March - First day of Post Office witnesses

Write-up: "Into the Horizone".
Live tweets from court - morning.
Live tweets from court - afternoon.
Angela van den Bogerd's witness statement.

Bonus material:
Miscarriages of justice

Day 6 - Tuesday 19 March - Second day of Post Office witnesses

Write-up: "The £5000 question."
Live tweets from court - morning.
Continued live tweets after I break the thread to delete a couple of tweets about the "hell"-line.
Live tweets from the lunch break as I clear up the issue of the "hell"-line.
Live tweets from court - afternoon.

Dawn Phillips' witness statement
Tracy Mather's witness statement
Paul Smith's witness statement

Bonus material:
The Helen Rose Report (mythical document finally made public)
Things are moving fast (following the reaction to the Common Issues trial judgment)

Day 7 - Wednesday 20 March - First day of Fujitsu witnesses

There was no public write-up of today due to a technical failure, but secret emailers got one - read it here!
Live tweets from court - morning.
Live tweets from court - afternoon.

David Johnson's witness statement.
Andy Dunks' witness statement.
Torstein Godeseth's three witness statements.

Day 8 - Thu 21 March - the day the recusal application went in

Write-up 1: "Going Postal." - on the recusal application
Write-up 2: "The Smoking Gun - or "Whither, Gareth?""
Live tweets from court - morning.
Live tweets from court - afternoon - (during which the recusal application drops)
Live tweets trying to make sense of the recusal application during a break in proceedings.

Application to recuse the presiding judge

Bonus material:
Je recuse - reaction to the recusal application

Day 9 was a short, procedural, pre-recusal hearing, added to the Horizon trial day-numbering retrospectively because on what became day 12, the judge decided the recusal process and hearings should form part of the Horizon trial.

Day 10 - Wed 3 April - Recusal Hearing

Write-up: "Enter Lord Grabiner."

Live tweets from the recusal hearing.

Day 11 - Tue 9 April - Recusal judgment

Write-up: "People will be talking about this case in decades to come."

The actual judgment (judgment no.4 in this litigation)

Day 12 - Thu 11 April - Final day of Fujitsu witnesses


Steve Parker's three witness statements.


The trial is currently adjourned until 4 June.

Future Horizon trial dates

4 - 7 June Cross examination of Jason Coyne, claimants' independent IT expert
11 - 13 June Cross-examination of Dr Worden, Post Office's independent IT expert
1 July - claimants' QC closing argument
2 July - defendant's QC closing argument

Bonus material:
Post Office seeks permission to appeal recusal judgment at Court of Appeal: "The Next Chapter."


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