All Magistrate’s Courts across Belize were closed for today, Friday, by permit of the Chief Justice. The reason? All 17 Magistrates and their staff started a two-day retreat at the Biltmore Plaza hotel in Belize City. Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith told us that the theme of the event is making the courts more “problem-solving,” through the use of technology. She discusses some of the topics covered and how they relate to use of technology. The effort to “wire” the courts is made possible by the Government’s Central Information Technology Office (CITO). According to the Chief Magistrate there is need for flexibility from the judicial system to best serve the interest of justice. It’s why the courts are training their officers on using video and recordings at trial. The retreat continues through Saturday. Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin was keynote speaker and encouraged the Magistrates to meet more often and take advantage of the opportunities offered them.