Judge who died of brain disease blocked press from reporting criminal case


Judge Bentley and activist Norman Scarth

To Mr Simon Parsons,

Head of Operations Judicial Conduct Investigations Office, & to General Enquiries. Judicial Conduct Investigations Office 81 & 82 Queens Building Royal Courts of Justice Strand London WC2A 2LL

Dear Mr Parsons,

The recent decision of the Supreme Court re. Mr Justice Jay (United Kingdom Supreme Court judgment Serafin v. Malkiewicz [2020] UKSC 23 given on 3 June 2020) is a notable one. Though the Court felt that the JUDGMENT was correct, they felt that Judge Jay's conduct was such as to render the trial unfair, that the judgment should be quashed, & a re-trial be ordered. And that was a civil case.

A 1,000 times worse was the conduct of Circuit Judge David Ronald Bentley at my CRIMINAL 'trial' at Sheffield Crown Court in April 2001. His conduct was such that I was in a state of shock throughout. At the time I could only think it came from his hostility to a one-time Litigant In Person (I had won a case in the ECtHR, Scarth v UK, 33745/96), but we now know it was more than that. He was in fact, mentally ill, & was to die in a mental hospital a few years later. See

https://oldedwardians.org.uk/obits/DavidBentley.html “his decision to retire early from the Bench in 2005, … But disease of dementia had secured it’s foothold, … . By 2009, he was receiving medical care in hospital (he was not a voluntary patient, but had been committed, & was to die there a few years later.). https://www.sheffieldtelegraph.co.uk/news/tributes-to-a-true-giant-of-legal-world-1-4398713 (PULLED)

“Judge David Bentley QC, who died aged 70 after suffering a brain disease, …”.

I suspect there will be serious omissions from the transcript of the 'trial', but feel that what is included will horrify you. I will elaborate as & when you ask - which I hope will not be long. At the age of 94, patience is a luxury cannot afford!

Yours faithfully,

Norman Scarth.

Co. Galway. Ireland

PS: To be going on with, I attach the Order by Judge Bentley banned Press Reporting. It was effectively a 'Secret Trial', made worse because it was not declared to be so. This was astonishing, in that I was the very man whose case in the ECtHR had brought the Ruling that ALL hearings must be open to the public (other than in 'exceptional circumstances' - of which there were none). He also banned my witnesses & evidence, &, facing a charge which could have meant life imprisonment (the sentence he eventually imposed was effectively that) denied me any representation whatsoever - not even a McKenzie Friend. NS