Unwell British House of Lords Member Ordered to Appear in Court Over Child Sex Abuse Charges

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An archive photo of British House of Lords Member Greville Janner.Credit: AP

An ageing member of Britain's House of Lords was ordered on Friday to appear in court to face charges of serious child sex crimes, despite defense lawyers arguing he was too unwell to attend. 

Lord Greville Janner, 87, a former Labour member of parliament and ex-president of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, is accused of 22 offences in the 1960s, '70s and '80s. He denies the charges and did not appear the start of the trial. 

"Lord Janner is fit to attend," Judge Howard Riddle told Westminster Magistrates Court, saying his presence was necessary in the interests of justice. Riddle said that the peer, who has been suspended by the opposition Labour party, would only be needed for as little as a minute in a brief hearing. 

In April, prosecutors said Janner, who has Alzheimer's, was too ill to face charges but were forced to reverse their decision a few months later following anger from his alleged victims. 

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