11 Jun 2013
Death by dangerous driving case delayed due to lack of translator
The Lithuanian defendant has only a few words of English, but a translator did not turn up at today's hearing
A serious case of causing death by dangerous driving had to be adjourned because of a mix-up over a translator.
A Lithuanian translator had been booked to attend a court at Mold on Tuesday for the first appearance of a driver charged in connection with a fatal road accident at the weekend.
Flintshire magistrates’ court at Mold waited all morning for a translator to attend so that the case of Gytis Masiulis could be dealt with.
His case was due to be sent to the crown court and the issue was bail was to be considered.
But this afternoon magistrates gave up and said they had no option but to put the case back until tomorrow when the defendant will appear at Wrexham.
Defending solicitor Phillip Lloyd Jones said it was a “total nightmare”.
His client only had a few words of English and he was anxious he should understand what was taking place. He said that fortunately another solicitor, Bethan Jones, had been able to help. Her husband employed a Lithuanian national who had agreed to help explain to the defendant what was going on.
The court was cleared for a short time while Mrs Jones contacted her husband so his employee could speak by mobile phone to the defendant in the dock.
When that was done, the court resumed and Masiulis was then remanded in custody for 24 hours.
It is the latest in a series of complaints by courts in the recent past about the quality of the translation services provided to the courts in North Wales.