In front of a bursting Courtroom at the Royal Courts of Justice yesterday, Katie Ebbs (Paralegal, Injury) secured the release of alleged murderer Ronnie Barker, and secured for herself the title of MW Advocacy Competition winner, 2014.
The competition runs every year and includes every Trainee and Paralegal in the firm. Over the coursee of a month and three gruelling preliminary rounds, the 40+ contestants were narrowed down until only Katie and John Molleskog (Trainee Solicitor, Criminal Litigation) remained. They contested the guilt of murder suspect Ronnie Barker, in the recreation of a genuine Crown Court Murder Trial, in front of a full jury, expectant audience and a retired Court of Appeal Judge.
With friends and colleagues standing in as witnesses, bailiffs and the defendant, the evening was not short of humour and excitement, as the narrative of the case and the tactics of the advocates unfolded. The drunk police officer, the brash girlfriend, the allegations of vendettas, the curious case of the moving murder weapon - all matched for intrigue only by the deft advocacy of our battling trainees.
Katie Ebbs is the fifth Advocacy Competition winner, and joins the likes of Christopher Maynard, a Trainee Solicitor already with Higher Rights of Audience, and John-Paul MacNamara, a dual-trained Solicitor-Barrister, in the winners circle.
We thank all our VIP guests who attended this year, along with extra special thanks to our Judge and Jury, without whom the event would only be half of what it was. Special thanks as well must go to the Royal Courts of Justice, whose resplendant venue and tireless staff are the backbone of the evening. We look forward to seeing everyone again in 2015 when an all new class of Trainees will go head to head for a chance to win the only Advocacy Competition of its kind in the country.
You can learn more about the Advocacy Competition by Advocacy Competition 2014
(image - Katie Ebbs being presented her £1500 prize by Managing Partner Colum Smith)