Northern Ireland legal aid cash 'out of control'
A government spending watchdog has said legal aid payments in Northern Ireland are "escalating out of control".
A report by the NI Audit Office said the payment system does not ensure value for money, or accountability.
The report also said the cost of legal aid in Northern Ireland is higher than in any other comparable jurisdiction.
While the cost has trebled over the past decade, it has not been matched by a proportionate rise in the number of criminal legal aid cases.