Held in contempt

News of astonishing developments in the courts has reached Tulkinghorn. Having already done away with some of the historical anachronisms that so frustrate modern practitioners, Lord Woolf (below) now seems to attract innovative court practice wherever he goes.

Sitting with colleagues Messrs Lord Justice May and Parker a couple of weeks ago, Woolf encountered a rather feisty litigant. The litigant opened his case wearing a T-shirt with the words "DO NOT ARREST THIS MAN" printed on the front. He was appealing against being ruled a "vexatious litigant". However, he opened his appeal by saying he would present his case in his underwear, and proceeded to strip off. He then approached the bench with a glass of water in his hand and, directing his comments at Lord Woolf, said: "This country was incensed by your decision to release Robert Thompson and John Venables. Had they killed Prince William or Prince Harry I bet they wouldn't have been released."

Then, stating that "this is for all of those angry people in this country", he threw the water at Lord Woolf, fortunately spraying him only lightly. Security staff were called and, fearing that he was going to be arrested, he removed his boxer shorts too. Addressing the entire court, he said: "If anyone is writing this down, you can record that it took both of my hands to cover my private parts." Surprisingly, he was not arrested – despite saying "I don't know what it takes to be arrested for contempt of court" – and was later seen fully clothed, continuing with his case, which has since been dismissed.