Mar 9 2012
Jajo the Rabbit 'hired' as translator at Birmingham courts
An interpreter has told how she registered her pet, Jajo the Rabbit, as a translator with a controversial Ministry of Justice-backed agency.
Marie Adamova says she successfully filled in an online application for carrot-chomping Jajo with Applied Language Solutions, which supplies linguists to West Midlands police and local courts.
The rabbit, she added, later received emails from the firm welcoming him aboard as a translator – and inviting him to an online seminar to learn more about his role.
The Czech interpreter, from Erdington, says she pulled the stunt as a protest against the company for allegedly causing “chaos” after taking over translator services for cops and Birmingham courts.
“It’s ridiculous,” said 46-year-old Marie, who has worked as a court interpreter for five years. I wasn’t surprised he was accepted because I knew they were not going to check anything.’’
Marie said she successfully filled in Jajo’s application form after registering his name, date of birth and an email address.
The rabbit later received a welcome email from the company which urged him not to “miss out” on future Ministry of Justice assignments. It added: “You are receiving this email as you have been identified as an interpreter.
‘‘If you still wish to gain work under the Framework Agreement, we advise you to return to the website and resume your registration.”
Marie says her ten-month old bunny was sent around 15 emails by ALS, including an invitation to be formally assessed. All the emails were signed off with the company slogan, “High quality language solutions delivered on time... with a smile!”
Earlier this month the Birmingham Mail, reported how foreign suspects were being allowed to walk free from police custody before questioning because of a shortage of interpreters from the service.
We told how officers have been forced to release some arrested foreign suspects on bail because they could not get interpreters for police station interviews.
On Tuesday, MP Gisela Stuart (Lab Edgbaston), highlighted the scandal to David Cameron in Parliament.
But, last night, an ALS spokeswoman said they could not find Jajo on their system.
She added: “Anyone can register their interest in becoming an interpreter for ALS. But they are still required to undergo assessment, security and qualification checks before being accepted as an ALS interpreter to work within the criminal justice system.
“I suspect that Jajo might fail such checks.”