Retrial: Courts give digital recording second chance

NASSAU-The judiciary plans to expand the use of digital recording systems although past glitches have led to lost testimony in the lower courts.
In her annual report, Chief Magistrate Joyann Ferguson-Pratt said, “Last year a digital system was put in place, but, sadly, I have observed that it is not fully functional in terms of transcriptions, and in some courts the recording facility of the machine is compromised.”
Stenographers were removed from the Magistrates’ Courts in 2014, forcing magistrates to record testimony by hand.
The recording system was intended to take the record in place of the stenographers.
However, because of of malfunctions, human reporters are still provided in high-profile Magistrates’ Court cases.


Although Chief Justice Brian Moree admitted that the digital system “did not achieve its objectives”, he intends to expand the system to all courts.
Speaking at a ceremony to mark the opening of the legal year, Moree said, “Digital recording systems will be installed in all courts in New Providence and Freeport.
“Transcription will be carried out as a back office service by voice writers after cross training.”
This move, Moree said, would speed up appeals since fewer transcripts would be required, once the recordings become the official record.
It’s unclear how this will plan affect the the 31 reporters in the court reporting unit.
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