|"There are plenty of eye-witness accounts. Just because you're so narrow-minded you need to have everything shoved under your nose before you–"
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The Council of Magical Law is a Ministry of Magic board comprised of a judge, a panel of members and jury, with competence to pass a verdict on criminal cases as well as reviewing information given to them by convicted criminals.
This Council towards the end of the First Wizarding War and perhaps sooner was led by Bartemius Crouch Snr, Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, was responsible for the deliberation on the Death Eater trials in the early 1980s, shorty after the end of the First Wizarding War.
Trials are brief, with members being presented the evidence against the accused beforehand. The accused is only brought in to give his testimony before the panel of judges pronounces judgement. Notably, on the trial of Bartemius Crouch Jr and Rabastan, Rodolphus and Bellatrix Lestrange, the accused were not allowed to provide testimony before being given a life sentence in Azkaban. People external to the Council were, apparently, allowed to attend some of the trials, such as Rita Skeeter (on Ludo Bagman's trial) and Mrs Crouch (on her son's trial).
- Igor Karkaroff - Released from Azkaban after presenting information leading to the capture of Death Eater Augustus Rookwood.
- Severus Snape - Vouched for by Albus Dumbledore. Cleared of all charges.
- Ludovic Bagman - Cleared of all charges.
- Barty Crouch Jr - Sentenced to life imprisonment in Azkaban.
- Rabastan Lestrange - Sentenced to life imprisonment in Azkaban.
- Rodolphus Lestrange - Sentenced to life imprisonment in Azkaban.
- Bellatrix Lestrange - Sentenced to life imprisonment in Azkaban.
Behind the scenes
- Since the Council of Magical Law was known to be actively prosecuting known Death Eaters and those suspected of being in their ranks, its possible that the Council were established for this purpose.
- It is possible Bartemius Crouch Snr, at the time serving as Head of Magical Law Enforcement, preferred to have Death Eaters face the Council rather than the Wizengamot so that he could 'go around' protocol and send people to Azkaban without a trail if made sufficiently convinced of their guilt, something which the Wizengamot's Charter of Rights otherwise would have prevented.