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.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Without a Paddle

The newly-famous 'Canoe Man' couple are now in custody, he remanded by a court, she being interviewed by the police. The magistrates concerned did not have a difficult decision to take in the man's case, as the prosecutor will have opposed bail on the grounds that he would fail to surrender if bailed, quoting in support his obtaining and using false travel documents, and his previous attempt to disappear. In addition he faces, if convicted, a considerable prison sentence, providing a further incentive to abscond.
The case is not likely to come to trial for many months (unless they decide to plead guilty to get their one-third discount off sentence) but if (NB)they are convicted a hefty sentence is unavoidable. Just the passport offence is worth 18 months or more, and if press reports are true there will be plenty of aggravating features that you can find in the guidelines:- sophisticated planning, large sums involved, and so on.
The case has certainly awoken the public's interest and has driven Gordon Brown's travails off the front page.