Tod and Mitchell specialise in all aspects of criminal defence work and regularly appear in criminal courts throughout Scotland dealing with cases in the High Court of Justiciary, the Sheriff Court and the Justice of the Peace Court.
Why use us?
Tod and Mitchell and our team of highly respected and experienced solicitors are well-known for our professional approach, vast knowledge of law and high percentage of case wins. Our head office is based in Paisley giving us the perfect central location for working with clients attending courts in Glasgow, Paisley, Dumbarton, Greenock and many more courts across Scotland.
High Court Solicitors Dumbarton
The High Court of Justiciary is Scotland’s Supreme Criminal Court. When sitting at first instance as a trial court it hears the most serious criminal cases such as murder and rape. A single Judge hears the cases with a jury of 15 people.
The High Court has three permanent locations in Scotland’s largest cities. These are in Edinburgh (Lawnmarket), Glasgow (Saltmarket) and Aberdeen (Merchatgate). Although these are not permanent basis the High Court also sits from time to time in Paisley, Dumbarton, Lanark, Livingston, Dumfries and Stirling.
The High Court is presided over by the Lord Justice General and the Lord Justice Clerk. They rarely sit as Judges of first instance and in criminal matters they usual sit as Chairpersons in the Courts of Criminal Appeal. The other full-time Judges are known as Lords Commissioners of Justiciary when they sit in the High Court. The Judges who preside over criminal trials in the High Court are augmented by part-time Judges who are generally sitting Sheriffs but are not Senators of the College of Justice.
Cases in the High Court are prosecuted by Advocate Deputes. They are Advocates or Solicitor Advocates who are appointed by the Lord Advocate. All prosecutions in the High Court are brought in the name of the Lord Advocate who is tasked with prosecuting in the public interests. A private prosecution is possible in the High Court in Scotland. However this is extremely rare and has occurred only once in the twentieth century.
In the High Court the defence will usually be conducted by an Advocate or a Solicitor Advocate. Advocates are similar to Barristers in England and at one time had the exclusive right of audience in the High Court. However since 1990 they share that right with Solicitor Advocates. Solicitor Advocates are members of the Law Society of Scotland. They are experienced solicitors who obtain an extension of their rights of audience in the lower Courts by undergoing additional training in evidence and in the procedure of the High Court.
The Firm of Tod & Mitchell in the High Court
Tod & Mitchell have had an extensive practice in the High Court for over 25 years. Two of the firms partners, namely Robert Mitchell the senior partner and Christopher McKenna the firm’s youngest partner, are Solicitor Advocates. The benefit of having Solicitor Advocates within the firm is that they run our most serious criminal cases from start to finish. They build a relationship with the client from the outset and carry out all necessary investigations and preparation. They are involved in the case at every stage and unlike Advocates do more than just the Court related aspects of the case. The ethos of the firm of Tod & Mitchell is that the client should have the highest quality representation at the earliest possible stage. The firm also utilises Advocates where appropriate and in many cases the firm’s Solicitor Advocates work along with members of the Faculty of Advocates and Queens Counsel.