Leading men of the community who in their role as judges and Justices of the Peace decided legal matters in the colony.
act as judges working around the clock, issuing warrants of arrest, presiding over trials of small claims, ($4,000 or less), and performing marriages. Their offices are usually located in or near the courthouse. The state has 719 magistrates in every county. Magistrates are appointed for two-year terms.
A public officer concerned with the administration of the law. EU programmes such as Grotius, Falcone and STOP train magistrates, and a formal European judicial training network is under development. . (See Judicial-civil: EJN - Organisation of justice - General information, judicial-criminal: European judicial network-judicial co-operation in the EU)