Thompsons criminal lawyers and staff will today be joining thousands of barristers and solicitors across the country in a second one day protest as part of a national campaign to try and halt proposed cuts to legal aid and stand up for the rights of innocent people who will be affected by these savage cuts.

The Minister of Justice, Chris Grayling, has announced that from April this year, legal aid fees will be severely cut, putting free legal assistance beyond the reach of millions of people that desperately need it.

The protest will last all day and is a further attempt to urge the government to reconsider the changes.

Paula Porter, head of criminal law at Thompsons, said: “This second day of protest against Grayling’s reforms highlights just how far-reaching their impact will be.

“This is not only a show of solidarity between solicitors and barristers and their clients, but also to implore the government to call a halt to these changes. It is primarily innocent, hard-working people who will bear the brunt of these savage and unnecessary cuts. Expert lawyers will pull back from providing a loss making service, less qualified people will move in and miscarriages of justice will surely follow.

“It is vital that we have a legal system which enables people to have proper assistance and allows them to pursue the fundamental principle of a free and fair society that you are ‘innocent until proven guilty’ without drowning under a mountain of debt.”

The London Criminal Courts Solicitors’ Association (LCCS) organised the ‘Save Legal Aid’ demonstration taking place outside Parliament today.