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 If any comment seems submitted just to advertise a website it will not be published.

Wednesday, 16 November 2016


All you need to know, according to this report published today, on custodial sentencing of ethnic minorities in crown courts. No comment from me but read for yourself.


  1. Given the combination of factors which they're attempting to factor out (17 * 7 * 2 * 2 * 2), I make that just 22 examples per group before they get to considering 5 different ethnicities. That's thin statistical gruel from which to sup conclusions.

    You can see the effect in the "Chinese or other", where a small pool of offenders correlates to a markedly higher chance of incarceration. With those sort of numbers, it only takes a few genuine rogues to skew the result.

    The most obvious omission is consideration of background reports and character witnesses. Conceivably, an assertion from your mother that you are a good boy who didn't do nothing might not carry as much weight as having a stable family environment, regular job, and testimonials from outside your immediate family.

    But then we're popping open a whole new can of sociological worms.

  2. As a poor humble JP at the bottom of Judiciary food chain, those results are not that I have seen. Admittedly the results in the report are nearly all crown court work, but for the matters retained in the lower court, the defendant is sentenced by the crime committed rather than by their colour, or background.

    I wonder if the defence strategies, in pleading not guilty, and perhaps claiming racial bias, results in harsher sentences when the trial continues and the evidence unravels.

    1. They do claim to have factored out the plea, but not whether it was at-earliest-opportunity, or after all the evidence against them has been heard and even the didn't-do-nothingest defendant has been advised that the jig is up.