Tayside and Central Scotland

Court case delayed over 'Geordie' accent

Perth sheriff Court Image copyright Google
Image caption Crown Office staff at Perth Sheriff Court said more time was needed in the case

Proceedings at a Scottish court were delayed after staff said they needed to "translate" the evidence of a man from the north east of England.

Perth Sheriff Court was told that Crown Office staff were unable to understand the words of accused Denis Boyd because of his "Geordie" accent.

Mr Boyd, 38, who now lives in Redgorton in Perthshire, denies sexually assaulting a woman in Perth in 2016.

Sheriff Gillian Wade agreed to schedule an extra day in the case.

Mr Boyd's defence agent, solicitor Nicky Brown, told the court that her client had taken part in a recorded interview with police and that a DVD had been produced for the court. However, staff had so far been unable to determine what was being said.

She added: "There is a difficulty with the transcript of his police interview. The difficulty is that the accused has a very, very strong Geordie accent and part of his response is missing.

"It is not just part of it, but substantial parts of it. I will need to go through it with him and put in the responses which are missing."

'Both parties'

Prosecutor John Malpass added: "That is the current position with the transcript. There are large tracts of the interview missing."

In granting an extra day's hearing, Sheriff Wade said she was not going to "rant and rave" at the delay.

She told the court: "I appreciate there has been a disclosure issue, but I am not going to rant and rave about it because that is not going to help.

"In the first instance the Crown have to make sure disclosure is made in time.

"There is clearly a problem with the DVD and both parties need to know what is said at the interview. The problem has been identified.

"I am not going to get anyone into trouble. I will continue on a joint motion for a further first diet for the missing responses from the DVD to be inserted into the transcript and for the transcript to be agreed."

The clerk of the court told Mr Boyd that an extra court day was being scheduled "for the police interview to effectively be translated".

Mr Boyd denies carrying out a sex attack on a woman in Victoria Street, Perth, on 29 August 2016. The trial is due to take place later this year.