TORY Justice Secretary Michael Gove was accused of attempting to use the courts as a moneyspinner yesterday after being caught trying to smuggle through fee hikes for a host of civil proceedings.
A 10 per cent jump in fees for civil cases was slipped out among 425 ministerial statements issued on December 17, dubbed David Cameron’s “take out the trash” day.
The disclosure comes on top of a fee rise in March and deals a blow to Mr Gove’s image as a great justice reformer.
The Lib Dems, who identified the rise, said it reflects an emerging trend that charging for justice is acceptable.
Justice spokesman Jonathan Marks QC said: “The courts and tribunal service provide a core social function in any democratic and just society, the government appears to be trying to use it as a profitmaking machine.