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.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Flashing the Cash

Many of our more regular customers know better than to carry any cash when they turn up at court, enabling them to stretch out payment of fines and costs as long as possible. Those brought in custody don't have a chance to put their money away. That's why we have now arranged for the jailers to bring up a note of how much cash the prisoner has in his property.
We were dealing with a serial shoplifter the other day, a foreign national, who had been picked up the day before she was due to fly home. The duty solicitor urged us to impose a Conditional Discharge, since she had no money, and no community sentences would be feasible. Unfortunately for his client, I had a note in front of me to say that she had over £800 in her bag, so we were able to fine her a large chunk of it. We did leave her enough for a taxi to the airport though. We like to be reasonable.