/

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.

My Photo
Name:
Location: Near London, United Kingdom

The blog is written by a team, who may or may not be JPs, but all of whom are interested in the Magistrates' Courts.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

D-Fined

The current Guidelines set out an approach to calculating fines that works fairly well, in my experience. Broadly, fines are set at Level A,B, or C, which relate to a multiple of the Relevant Weekly Income. That is either the actual weekly take-home, or an assessed amount of £100 for those on benefit, which takes rough account of other benefits such as housing and council tax benefits, or £350 for those who don't tell us anything. It's an inexact science, because the court has neither the time nor the resources to do any better. Rough justice, then.
There are also Bands D and E (they are on page 151 of the Guidelines). We rarely use these, but we did make use of a Band D a few weeks ago. A young man had committed a drink-drive at the kind of level that would attract a medium-upper community penalty, but there was a problem with using unpaid work or a curfew because he is a mechanic in the RAF and may well be off to a hot and dusty place in the New Year, or possibly sooner. So we fined him Band D; that came to nearly £700 with costs; we banned him for the appropriate period and sent him on his way. The officer who came with him told us that the RAF will apply its own sanctions as the Service takes a dim view of its members getting into trouble in civilian courts.
So the D and E fines have their uses, but we won't be using them very often.

http://parkingattendant.blogspot.com/http://www.crimeline.info/