How to Swear (like a Judge)

Hello and hi. If you read my blog, you probably know that I have mad love for The English Legal System. Sure, I could wax lyrical about it plenty-and tell you the difference between a solicitor and a barrister…but I am assuming you already know the difference (because you have read my blog).

There is a lot to be said for the ELS. My main concern is how on earth am I going to rock a barrister’s wig? Does it come in the ‘Rachel’? You know, Rachel from Friends- and that cute hairstyle of hers. Truth be told, these thoughts occupy my waking thoughts-among others. That being said, I came across a story about a swearing judge recently. As someone who never swears (total fabrication) I found the story quite intriguing. So, this is what happend.

A judge launched an expletive-laden response to a racist thug in her court. Thug, Hennigan was being sentenced for breaching an Asbo, by using racist language towards a Caribbean woman and her 2 young kids when he said she (the judge) was a “bit of a c—“ Judge Lynch replied: “You are a bit of a c— yourself.” Upon hearing that Hennigan got really cross and shouted at the JUDGE “Go f— yoursef”, the judge replied “You too.” That REALLY happened. I can’t believe it. Shocking.

It is pretty unusual for a person to speak to a judge in this way. Similarily, her response to him was pretty unusual too. Am glad she did. In brief, judges here are treated with reverance-of course they are, and should be too.

Pictured below is Judge Patricia Lynch, QC. She seems nice. Look, she is even smiling in this picture-who even knew she had a potty mouth?  But please, DO NOT yell obscenities at her (or anyone else). It is not a good idea. Just don’t do it.

Judge Patricia Lynch QC

Then Hennigan reportedly shouted “Seig Heil” and banged the glass panel of the dock as he was jailed for 18 months.


Hennigan was in breach of an Asbo imposed in 2005-when a swatstika was discovered on the front door of his council house. Oh my good God. What the what? Further,  prosecutor LS told the court that TF, a black Caribbean woman and her 2 kids, were in Market Square Harlow-she had recently moved to the town and was looking for a shop. She noticed the defendant waving at her-she then approached him and he asked her if she was looking for the toilet. She said ‘no’ that she was looking for Slimming World (like Weight Watchers). He then gave her directions-it was a pretty normal conversation but when she walked off Hennigan said ‘I don’t agree with inter-racial relationships. I like natural.’ She asked him what he meant and he said ‘I prefer white children.’ TF was pretty shocked and called the police, and later said,“The incident made her feel very upset, hurt, out of place and distressed. It’s not the first time she’s been racially abused and it brought back unpleasant memories,” Hennigan was identified while he was in custody (for his breached Asbo).

Fast forward to sentencing and Judge Lynch told Hennigan:”Your offence is thoroughly unpleasant and repeated breaches of this order using the most unpleasant of language and causing distress…it’s said custody would be distressing for you but it seems you never learn. This is the ninth time you have breached this order, the same offensive, racist comments and you don’t deserve another chance.” It was at this point that Hennigan began talking directly to the judge-he commentd that he hadn’t intentionlly abused anyone “whatever you think.” Judge Lynch strongly disagreed and said “No one cares what you think.” Hennigan responded: “I know they don’t, that’s why I’ve not had any help for years.” At which point, Judge Lynch indicated that she was NOT going to argue with him and was sending him straight to prison. It was then that Hennigan began swearing at her. I mean…who swears at a judge? Come. On.


Previously, Hennigan had been hauled before an Old Bailey judge, back in October 2012 for making Nazi salutes while at a pub in Bishopsgate (in the City of London). He claimed he had only been raising his arm to collect his change after paying for a drink. Wow. Just wow. Later, Hennigan was convicted of breaching as Asbo after a trial.

Hennigan, 50, from Essex,  is clearly a nasty piece of work and has had dozens of previous convictions for offences, including drug and firearm possession and common assault. Naughty. He faced the court for breaching his Asbo in 2012, when he lauched racist abuse at a newsagent before attacking him with a display of sweets.

Pictured below his Hennigan. Umm…may he find the error in his ways over the next 18 months while he is in prison, but somehow I doubt he will.

 John Hennigan.

In closing, mad props to Judge Lynch. She is a BOSS. Judges should be respected. The role of a judge is to intepret the law and assess the evidence presented. Also, judges control how hearings and trials unfold in their courtroom-and if that involves swearing, then so be it. Judge Lynch, if you are reading this…you rock. That is all.




Please know that it is perfectly OK to disagree with me. I do ask that you do so respectfully. Cheers/ Thanks





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