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.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Scotland 0, Home Office 5000

The furore about Baroness Scotland who employed a foreign cleaner who did not have clearance to work leaves me feeling uncomfortable for several reasons:-
We are told that the Attorney General has been 'fined' £5000 for her failure to photocopy the unfortunate cleaner's documents. No court was involved, this is just an administrative penalty imposed by civil servants. I don't like that. If the State is going to fine the Queen's subjects, let that be a judicial process, carrried out in public. This was decided behind closed doors, then leaked to the BBC in advance, which is a disgrace.
If the law on employing foreigners is so complex that an intelligent senior lawyer can get it wrong, how is Joe Public supposed to manage?
The law on immigration and who may and may not work is hopelessly confused, and the situation is a shambles. Our economy is now substantially dependent on cheap foreign labour (despite there being between 3 and 5 million non-active Brits living on benefits). There is a vast no-questions-asked cash-in-hand economy out there, and no politician seems to have a clue what to do about it. And the Government has no idea how many people are in the country. Brilliant.