Lord Janner in 1996

Lord Janner must appear at court in person for a hearing over child sex abuse charges, Westminster Magistrates’ Court has ruled.

The former Labour peer, 87, who has dementia, denies allegations of abuse in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.

He did not attend court on Friday, and his defence said he was “unfit” to appear.

The case is likely to be sent to a crown court, which will decide whether Lord Janner is fit to face a trial.

The case comes after a review overturned a Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) decision not to bring charges because of his health.

In April, Director of Public Prosecutions Alison Saunders decided it was not in the public interest for Lord Janner – who as Greville Janner was an MP for 27 years – to be tried on 22 allegations of historical sexual abuse against nine children, because of his severe form of dementia.

However, six of the alleged victims asked an independent QC to examine her ruling under the CPS’s Victims’ Right to Review scheme.

David Perry QC concluded that it was in the public interest to bring proceedings before a criminal court.

If a crown court judge decides the former Labour MP for Leicester is fit to plead, a full trial may take place.

If not, there will be a so-called trial of the facts, where a jury will decide only if he committed the physical acts of abuse, with no finding of guilt and no conviction.

via Lord Janner told he must attend court hearing – BBC News.