the name given to courts in Northern Ireland in which certain terrorist offences were tried by a judge sitting without a jury. The name derives from that of the English law lord whose report in 1972 recommended their creation.
Boutrab, who travelled from Dublin to Belfast by train, was the first al Qaida suspect to be tried in the North under the non-jury Diplock court system, which had only previously been used for the trial of loyalist and republican terrorists.
As a judge in Northern Ireland he often presided over so-called Diplock courts, where major crimes are tried by judges alone and where the prosecution is given wide latitude in the use of paid informants.
But why is unionism afraid of the creation of an accountable, representative police service that is free from partisan political control or a criminal justice system free from Diplock courts and repressive legislation?