The prosecutor explained as follows:-
One of the defendants had been previously in Court charged with fraud. As the trial was starting, a colleague of the Bench walked into the court room and spoke to the Legal Adviser (AKA Court Clerk).
The L/A then turned to the Bench and asked that they should rise immediately. Normally this means serious trouble so they did so and the L/A joined them in the retiring room to let them know that the colleague who had just been in the court room previously had seen the defendant in the fraud case they were trying, with a Bluetooth earpiece in her ear.
It seems he had seen her in the foyer having difficulty fixing the device in place inside her Hijab, and was being assisted by another woman in Muslim dress, also wearing Hijab.
The big concern was that both the defendant and her associate had come into Court wearing Niqabs.
The Bench returned to the court room and having resumed their seats, the Chairman asked the prosecutor to pause, instructing the defendant to remove her Niqab immediately. She refused, even after it was explained that she would be in contempt of Court should she persist.
In fact, it wasn't until the dock officers arrived from the cells to take her into immediate custody that she complied, and it became obvious that she was, indeed, wearing a Bluetooth earpiece, which was clearly operative as the blue LED (Light Emitting Diode) was seen to be flashing.
Her associate was, at this time, trying to make her way unobtrusively to the exit from the public gallery, and the Chairman directed one of the dock officers to detain her as well.
She also refused to remove her Niqab, even under threat of contempt proceedings, which left the Bench with no alternative but to have her held pending the arrival of the Police, on suspicion of attempting to pervert the course of justice.
The fraud trial was adjourned until a day to be decided.
Following this, both women had been searched in the Court cells by the Police. Both were found to be wearing Bluetooth earpieces and both were found to be in possession of mobile phones which were switched on when the Police seized them.
It was confirmed by their respective phone service suppliers that the two phones had been connected during the time of the trial, meaning that the defendant and her associate were in direct but hidden contact, and would have remained so, presumably, for the duration of the trial.
Both were then charged with attempting to pervert the course of justice and were released on bail to attend Court last Thursday, at which time they were formally sent to the Crown Court.
Novel use of a politically sensitive situation I thought.