Of course, the WTS speaks out of both sides of its mouth on this issue:
Elders are judges
Elders are not judges sort of
*** w94 8/1 p. 16 Cultivate Reasonableness ***
When elders act as judges in the congregation
, they endeavor to follow Jesus’ reasonable example.
*** w92 7/1 p. 14 Elders, Judge With Righteousness ***
) In turn, as Head of the Christian congregation, Christ uses the faithful and discreet slave class and its Governing Body to appoint elders, who at times have to act as judges. (Matthew 24:45-47; 1 Corinthians 5:12, 13; Titus 1:5, 9) As surrogate judges, these are under an obligation to follow closely the example of the heavenly Judges, Jehovah and Christ Jesus.
Since 1935 the anointed have received the loyal support of an ever-increasing "great crowd," whose hope is to survive "the great tribulation" and live forever on a paradise earth. (Revelation 7:9, 10, 14-17) As "the marriage of the Lamb" approaches, more and more of these are being appointed by the anointed Governing Body to serve as elders and judges in the upwards of 66,000 congregations of Jehovah’s Witnesses throughout the earth. (Revelation 19:7-9)
*** w92 7/1 p. 15 Elders, Judge With Righteousness ***
Elders acting in a judicial capacity should remember that the real Judges of each case are Jehovah and Christ Jesus
With reverential fear, the elders judging a case should do their utmost to be sure that Jehovah is really ‘with them in the matter of judgment.’ Their decision should accurately reflect the way Jehovah and Christ consider the matter. What they symbolically ‘bind’ (find guilty) or ‘loose’ (find innocent) on earth should be what has already been bound or loosed in heaven—as revealed by what is written in the inspired Word of God. If they pray to Jehovah in Jesus’ name, Jesus will be "in their midst" to help them. (Matthew 18:18-20, footnote; The Watchtower, February 15, 1988, page 9) The atmosphere at a judicial hearing should show that Christ is truly in their midst.
*** w77 3/1 p. 147 Judging with Righteousness, Wisdom and Mercy ***
? Jehovah has raised up elders who are in a position to serve as judges and counselors. These men must meet the divine requirements set out at 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9.