Jail for runaway juror

Preston Crown Court
Preston Crown Court
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A JUROR in a serious robbery plot trial who flew to Malta for a holiday before the case ended has been jailed for fifty six days.

Janet Chapman, 52, from Preston New Road, Blackpool, told a court she thought she would be okay to travel abroad for a week because her doctor had signed her off as unfit to work the day before.

She believed that would excuse her continued jury service.

The day that Judge Stuart Baker began summing up the evidence in the four week trial, she rang Preston Crown Court to say she would not be in due to a back problem.

The following day she called from Liverpool Airport to say she had sciatica and would not be able to attend court.

She then had a break in Malta and was arrested on a warrant with bail when she returned to the UK.

She has now been jailed, Judge Anthony Russell QC, who told her “It is clear you deliberately deceived the court for your own ends and pleasure”.