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 If any comment seems submitted just to advertise a website it will not be published.

Thursday, 12 March 2015


 The public relations and press office of the Ministry of Justice should feature in all schools of journalism as an example of how to provide maximum publicity for “initiatives” which appear to be from the school of Orwell`s 1984 where the world view of the inner party is rotated through a prism of 180* for the proles. 

Today`s press release announces the lifting of the level 5 maximum fine of £5,000.  In keeping with previous similarly heralded announcements the practice will be radically different from the impression given.  Whatever the offence the fine applicable must be related to ability to pay i.e. income or in rare cases; assets.  That barrier in itself will considerably reduce the number of offenders eligible for this “new” unlimited fine level. My experience informs me that as far as CPS prosecutions are concerned this change will make virtually no difference to the fines handed out in future years.  Like many other innovative measures conjured up by overpaid young things at Petty France we will hear little more of this nonsense.  Perhaps if they devoted similar efforts to retrieving the one billion or more pounds currently outstanding in fines, costs, compensations and surcharges   this cynical blogger would be more sympathetic to the most awful Lord Chancellor in his lifetime.  As a final thought today the wording of the release reinforces his impression that it is only a matter of perhaps another two parliaments when lay benches at magistrates` courts will be precluded from imposing custodial sentences. In such a scenario if J.P.s are still sitting in a court environment which I very much doubt custody will be the preserve of District Judges(M.C.) 

1 comment:

  1. 1984? How absolutely right you are. To Justice you can add every press release and statement from DWP.

    Orwell's Newspeak rules!