The former Dundee University rector accused of committing a contempt of court during the recent Alex Salmond trial wants his hearing conducted in a physical court room.
A lawyer acting for former diplomat Craig Murray, 61, told a virtual High Court hearing on Wednesday that it is client’s preference for the matter to be heard in a traditional manner.
John Scott QC spoke as a “substantial” number of members of the public listened to the hearing which was held using video conferencing technology.
Mr Scott said that he was aware there was not any court building available which would be large enough to accommodate the people who listened into the proceedings.
He told judges Lady Dorrian, Lord Glennie and Lord Turnbull he was aware the Covid-19 crisis would place restrictions on how Scottish courts could function in the next few months.
The solicitor advocate told the judges it was still Mr Murray’s hope the hearing could take place in a physical court.
Mr Scott spoke during a procedural hearing into the matter.
He said: “It is the position of Mr Murray – and my submission – that when the time comes that the hearing takes place in a court.”
Prosecutors launched contempt of court proceedings against Mr Murray, a former UK ambassador to Uzbekistan, earlier this year.
Mr Murray, who now works as a blogger, attended two days of the trial against Mr Salmond at the High Court in Edinburgh before writing about it on his website.
Prosecutors claim some of the comments made by Mr Murray in his blog breached strict legal guidelines about what can be reported during High Court proceedings.
Mr Salmond was cleared of 13 charges of sexual assault. A further charge of sexual assault had previously been dropped by prosecutors.
The former first minister had maintained his innocence throughout the two-week trial which was held in March 2020.
The women who made the allegations against Mr Salmond included an SNP politician, a party worker and several current and former Scottish government civil servants and officials.
On Wednesday, Lady Dorrian – who presided over the Salmond trial – fixed another procedural hearing in the matter to take place on July 7.
Lady Dorrian said: “It would be premature for us to discuss this today.”