Now that I am retired having been many years a magistrate with a long awareness of the declining freedoms enjoyed by the ordinary citizen and a corresponding fear of the big brother state`s ever increasing encroachment on civil liberties I hope that my personal observations within these general parameters will be of interest to those with an open mind. Having been blogging with this title for many years against the rules of the Ministry of Justice my new found freedom should allow me to be less inhibited in these observations.

Comments are usually moderated. However, I do not accept any legal responsibility for the content of any comment. If any comment seems submitted just to advertise a website it will not be published.

Saturday, 24 August 2013


From time to time I have remarked on the iniquity of prosecutions in the criminal courts for non payment of a T.V. license.  Recent figures are that 180,000 people were prosecuted for this offence last year.  If my personal experiences are not unusual  only a small percentage actually appear in court to defend themselves.  Nevertheless it is a daunting prospect especially since many defendants are  new to this country and unaware of the  unique way we have of funding  state financed television services.  Capita plc were contracted by BBC for this task and their contract was renewed last year. This is the same Capita which took over court interpreter services last January just weeks after buying out the miniscule company Applied Language Solutions  which was awarded a contract from Her Majesty`s Courts and Tribunal Service.  This process and who paid whom for how much and in what circumstances has to my knowledge been kept firmly under wraps.  Capita and those senior people at HMCTS and the Justice Ministry responsible for the award of the contract were  castigated by the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee.  Now we are told that Capita has been awarded another contract to keep track of criminals and those on remand wearing electronic tags. 

It seems that there is a cuckoo in the nest.  This organisation and others of multi billion £ s value are almost a rival fiefdom operating supposedly under control of civil servants who are often at positions of influence way beyond their competence. In the news of late have been revelations of international companies minimising their tax base by funnelling profits to tax  favourable jurisdictions.  I am no socialist but it seems that an era long depicted in fiction of  off shore multi facetted faceless companies controlling countries` economies  with little respect for anything other than profit is peeping to us from not too far in the future.

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