BARRISTERS' decision to take an unprecedented half day of action against the Government's plans to slash the legal aid bill caused major disruption at courts in Hampshire today.

At Southampton, all trials and most sentence hearings were adjourned until this afternoon as barristers made history by failing to attend in protest at moves to cut rates by 30 per cent.

The only cases that went ahead were four probation service linked review cases where defendants did not require legal representation, and a police application that was also heard behind closed doors.

His cases were being distributed between the three other judges. His trial was also adjourned until tomorrow.