TASMANIA'S Chief Justice leaned back in his chair in an office lined with law journals.
``The most memorable case?'' He smiled.
``Well, I'll tell you if you promise not to publish it.''
Chief Justice Ewan Crawford is in his chambers at the Supreme Court in Launceston, just before court starts for the day.
The room, like the wood-panelled courtroom it sits behind, gives almost no indication that time has moved on since the then Justice Crawford joined the bench in 1988.
But the first thing he talks about is Google.
``Obviously now information is so obtainable on the web that some judges are coming to the conclusion that it's unrealistic not to expect jurors to find that information,'' Chief Justice Crawford said.
The internet age has been causing headaches for judges, aware that jurors could run a search on an accused person's name before delivering their verdict.
It has even been made an offence in some states, but that's not a course he thinks Tasmania needs to take.
``I can understand that it arguably should be an offence if a juror is deliberately seeking to bring about a miscarriage of justice, but I imagine in most cases they are genuine in their desire to find out information,'' he said.
Telling jurors to base their verdict on the evidence heard in court, and not outside whispers, is a standard direction given at the end of the trial.
And Chief Justice Crawford said juries should be given more credit to do the right thing.
``I think we should trust more in the jury's good sense,'' he said.
The 70-year-old has been practising law for almost 50 years and was appointed Chief Justice in 2008.
He reaches the retirement age of 72 on April 8 next year.
So what cases have left the strongest impression?
``Murders and extreme violence,'' he said.
``Gee, you remember a lot of them.''
Despite sitting though some ``very harrowing'' trials, he still enjoys ``sitting up there listening to court cases unfold''.
``I'm not saying that they're lots of fun like detective fiction is, but I still find cases interesting,'' he said.
Chief Justice Crawford said judges should not be influenced by community expectations, or community criticisms.
``We have to decide what we believe is the sentence and what public clamour says it should be,'' he said. ``We are not here to provide vengeance.''
He said the reasoning behind court decisions, like the principles judges consider in sentencing, are lost on most of the general public.
But, he said, that's not the court's fault.
The doors to the public gallery at the Cameron Street courthouse are open to anyone who would come.
And with the exception of family members, the gathering of accused persons on the first day, and intermittent assembly of the jury panel, it sits empty all sittings.
Having refused the standing offer to come and learn about the court process, Chief Justice Crawford said, it was ``irritating'' to see people with an incomplete understanding of how the justice system operates criticise its results.
``I don't consider it's the court's responsibility to educate people on the law and the law of sentencing,'' he said.
``What should we do, hold classes? And would they come?''
The treatment of alleged sexual assault victims is another area for which the court suffers criticism.
The cross-examination can be brutal to watch, and victim support groups have named the stress of a trial as the main reason complaints of sexual abuse are dropped.
Chief Justice Crawford said that while the court had a responsibility to protect complainants, it owed more to the accused person in the presumption of innocence.
``I have never forgotten, when I was in practice, I had a young man come to see me as a client. He had been picked up when walking home from work one afternoon, by police, and taken to the station and interviewed on an allegation that he raped a girl at work,'' he said.
The woman in that incident admitted to having made up the allegation before it went to trial.
``Now just imagine him in court if he was somehow prevented from testing the evidence of the complainant and prevented from trying to establish that she was a liar,'' he said.
``And by the way, he told me - and I'll never forget the moment in my office - he said, `I'm a virgin. I've never had sex'!''
He said victims, and victim support associations, based their objections on trust that every complaint was true.
``And we know that's not so,'' he said.