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.

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Monday, 4 August 2014


It has been variously estimated that alcohol and/or drugs are the basis of around 70% criminal activity. It would not be unreasonable to assume that half that total of offending occurs when excess alcohol has been consumed. Some offences eg drunk and disorderly and drink driving are specifically related to the demon drink. Various measures have been and are being tried to reduce this scourge which has plagued society for millennia eg drinking banning orders or ASBOs which just shift the geography of offending. Last week saw the inauguration of a localised effort to deter some of those offenders where alcohol was considered to be a prime component of their criminal activity. It is being trialled in four South London magistrates` courts; Croydon, Lambeth Southwark and Sutton. This seems to be a very pro active and interesting initiative from the Justice Ministry which is not a description I have used very often. My one concern is that presumably the wearers of the alcohol tags and the tags themselves will require interrogation by the Probation Service or what remains of it in South London after what appears to be a disasterous re-organisation. Perhaps a member associated with that service might be able to offer further information.

1 comment:

  1. I can see a couple of ways to get around this one. Firstly, as the device is a vapour-phase detector, wrapping it in cling-film ought to mostly defeat it, as would spraying something into the detector.

    Failing that, triggering multiple false positives would quickly convince the monitoring team that a device was faulty. This may well happen anyway; ketones from particularly malodorous socks might well be enough to trigger the device, as might shower gel and the like.