The Magistrate's Blog (2005-2012)

This blog has migrated to www.magistratesblog.blogspot.co.uk This blog is anonymous, and Bystander's views are his and his alone. Where his views differ from the letter of the law, he will enforce the letter of the law because that is what he has sworn to do. If you think that you can identify a particular case from one of the posts you are wrong. Enough facts are changed to preserve the truth of the tale but to disguise its exact source.

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Location: Near London, United Kingdom

The blog is written by a retired JP, with over 30 years' experience on the Bench.

Sunday, February 05, 2006


Today's News Of The World online edition perfectly encapsulates the tabloids' gloating and sadistic approach to crime and punishment:-

EXCLUSIVE: YOU pay for Broadmoor fiends' visits


By Dan Evans

FAMILIES of depraved killers such as Yorkshire Ripper Peter Sutcliffe are getting wads of public money to visit the monsters.

Refunds are made for rail tickets and petrol costs to relatives and pals who drop in on Britain's most vile inmates.

While ordinary folk get no help visiting family in hospitals miles from home, bosses at Britain's top secure hospitals are handing over huge sums of taxpayers' cash to pay for trips to see the beasts.

Broadmoor, Ashworth and Rampton all offer the funding. Last year Broadmoor—where Sutcliffe is held—spent £29,000 on the scheme.

It pays 11p for each mile driven to the hospital in Crowthorne, Berks. And half train and bus fares. (my bold type)

A relative said: "The families of victims won't be happy."

Sutcliffe, 59, right—who butchered 13 women—gets frequent visits from his ex-wife Sonia, who could claim £50 a visit.

Broadmoor defended the payouts, saying: "It's not good for inmates to be left alone."

But Tory MP Andrew Mitchell said: "Someone who visits a sick relative in hospital gets no help-—so why are we paying this?"

Broadmoor is a hospital, not a prison. Those locked in there are patients. Many of them have committed horrible crimes, but they are not 'beasts'. To refer to a disturbed human being in that way demeans us all.

I hope that Dan Evans is proud of his handiwork as he sits down for Sunday lunch with his family. I hope for their sake that none of them ever suffers from mental illness. But that would be different, Dan, wouldn't it?