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 If any comment seems submitted just to advertise a website it will not be published.

Monday, 22 February 2016


I have argued here previously that at that interface where addiction is the primary cause of criminality treatment of the addiction to the extent of its being made compulsory and adequately supervised should have a priority over punishment.  It would be unlikely to be more expensive in the short term and would in the long term be more cost effective.  

Multiple convictions for drink driving are generally the result of alcohol addiction.  An offender on his fifth such conviction in ten years must surely be assumed to be an alcoholic.  This offender has been made the subject of a 12 month suspended sentence order with the comments of the bench chairman, "previous orders do not seem to have deterred him from committing further offences". 

Is there no liaison possible between Justice and Health Departments where all those bright young things fighting for promotion can think up suitable cost effective  alternatives to prison sentences , suspended or otherwise, to combat the 70% of criminal activity owing to drink or drug habits. Financial penalties are not a solution considering the gaping gap between the amounts imposed and the amounts collected. 

What`s the term I`m seeking?  Got it!  Joined up government...... perhaps it`s all around in an unseen alternate universe. 

1 comment:

  1. Completely agree, though alcohol misuse affects far more than just driving, as you also point out. What most ordinary drivers don't realise is that a conviction for drink driving and related offences may bring the offender into the DVLA High Risk Offender Scheme, with medical tests before a licence may be issued at the end of the ban period. The gentleman you refer to was (perhaps unfortunately) just under the limit for the scheme for a first offender but as this was apparently his fifth, I am more than surprised that he actually had a licence at all.