Court of Appeal hears real criminal case in moot court
On Monday 21 October, Monash University had the privilege of hosting the Victorian Court of Appeal at the Faculty of Law’s state-of-the-art Moot Court.
The Court heard a criminal appeal, making it the first time in its 167-year history that the Court has sat at a university.
The Court of Appeal is Victoria’s highest court and hears appeals from the Supreme Court, County Court, Magistrates’ Court and the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT).
Court of Appeal President Justice Chris Maxwell (above, right), Justice Pamela Tate (above, left) and Justice Mark Weinberg heard the appeal, which was brought by the appellant against his conviction and sentence for drug-related offences. The judges and lawyers for both parties were present in the Moot Court. The appellant appeared via video link from prison.
Before the hearing, the judges were generous enough to conduct a question and answer session with Law students and staff. Counsel for both parties kindly addressed students after the hearing. They discussed the matter, their submissions and also took questions about their career paths. The chance for students to talk to judges and counsel on the day, and to see an actual appeal and advocacy before the highest court in Victoria, all in the very same Moot Court they use as students, was a rare and memorable opportunity.
Designed by internationally acclaimed Melbourne-based architects Jackson Clements Burrows, the $4 million Moot Court is the most advanced moot court at an Australian university. It is designed to reflect a real court environment and is embedded with the latest technology, including audio-visual and teleconferencing capability.
The Moot Court is also used as a technology and research platform. It is able to be used for a wide variety of research projects, including court technology, human-centred design, artificial intelligence, jury behaviour, technology-assisted advocacy and machine learning.