Sacked High Court judge who hit wife is to work again

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A DISGRACED High Court judge sacked for hitting his wife will be allowed to go back to working as a barrister, a panel has ruled.

James Allen QC, from Woolley, was dismissed by the Lord Chief Justice after being convicted of common assault following a trial last June.

The father of two and his wife, deputy coroner Melanie Williamson, had both falsely claimed bruising and facial swelling were self-inflicted.

He spent £76,000 on legal fees trying to beat the charge, and was later expelled by his chambers, the Bar Standards Board heard.

His lawyer told the hearing he now wanted to rebuild his career as a barrister in the north east.

Suspending him for three months with an order to pay £675 costs, Judge Paul Collins said the financial losses Allen had already suffered were “not insignificant, even for a successful member of the bar”.

He said: “Mr Allen has already been heavily punished for assaulting his wife. These are very high burdens for any member of the bar, and must bear very heavily on him indeed.

“In those circumstances Mr Allen is not to be punished a second time.”

The assault took place at the couple’s home in Wakefield on February 20 in 2010, after a caller rang 999 and claimed Allen was ‘trying to kill’ his wife.

Medical experts later testified that the injuries she sustained could not have been self-inflicted.

Following the trial at Bradford Magistrates’ Court, district judge Daphne Wickham also handed Allen a 12-month supervision order.

Allen admitted professional misconduct bringing the profession into disrepute.