The Judiciary today said it is planning to construct a mega courtroom in the Wanchai Law Courts Building for handling social events (SE) cases.
In response to media reports on the handling of SE cases, the Judiciary said in a statement that the mega courtroom to be constructed would be capable of accommodating up to 50 defendants, 100 legal representatives and 100 family members, media representatives or members of the public, mainly for coping with SE and other cases involving a large number of defendants.
The mega courtroom, together with three additional courtrooms and associated facilities, will be provided during the interim years before the commissioning of the proposed new District Court building at Caroline Hill Road.
Construction is expected to start in May 2022 and be completed in mid-2023.
The new mega courtroom will also complement the newly-renovated mega court of the West Kowloon Law Courts Building.
The Judiciary noted that in the past one and a half years, it has been according high priority to coping with the upsurge of SE cases as expeditiously as possible while ensuring due administration of justice.
While making continued efforts in increasing judicial manpower through the recruitment of judges and appointment of deputies, the Judiciary has been making the best possible use of around 135 existing courtrooms suitable for criminal cases in 11 law courts buildings for handling around 80 SE case hearings each week.
As at end-July, more than 1,900 SE cases were brought before various levels of courts and around 1,400 or 74% have already been disposed of.
The Judiciary expects that the vast majority of cases at the Magistrates’ Courts would have been disposed of by the end of this year.