Lord Janner ordered to appear in court despite dementia

Mr Janner 87, did not appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London, with his lawyers claiming he was too ill to attend the hearing over allegations that he had abused youngsters over a 25-year period.

However Chief Magistrate Howard Riddle decided he should attend for a formal hearing – which may last less than two minutes – in which his name and address would be confirmed, if necessary by an aide.

“Lord Janner is fit to attend,” he said, even raising the rare possibility of establishing the court in the politician’s home to minimise the likely distress he would suffer.

He said Mr Janner, once a top lawyer, did not have to understand the proceedings but was legally required to be present.