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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Friday, 14 July 2017

A NEW MAGISTRATE`S OPINIONS

It would seem that MOJ has decided that more Justices of the Peace need to be appointed. The article in this local newspaper is one of many similar I have read over the last few months.  What does strike me, however, is the quote of a new magistrate when commenting on a decision of custody, "There were long discussions about whether it was the right thing to do, what purpose it would serve and the impact on both the defendant, and of course the wider community and the victim". 


He does not mention Guidelines or public protection except for "impact". I also consider it questionable if "the right thing to do" is part of a structured sentencing exercise.  As far as I am aware the victims` considerations should not inform sentencing. But then having been appointed 20 years ago my attitudes, training and experience might now be considered anti deluvian if I were still active. 

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