The Lord Chancellor took a swipe at his cabinet colleagues yesterday, warning them not to put "undue pressure" on judges over verdicts that could embarrass the Government.

Tony Blair and Charles Clarke, the Home Secretary, have recently made clear their frustration with cumbersome court procedures and attacks by the judiciary on anti-terror legislation. But Lord Falconer of Thoroton told MPs that he had a duty to protect judicial independence from interference by ministers.

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