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
Location: Near London, United Kingdom

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

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Biter is Bitten

I have previously commented on the malign influence that The Sun has had on criminal justice. The paper has followed a consistent populist agenda in which all judges are out of touch, all sentences are 'soft' and the length of every prison sentence is preceded by the word 'just'. At one time the Blair government danced to the Sun/Murdoch tune with the happy acquiescence of Blunkett, Straw and the others. The campaign to 'cage the killer drivers' resulted in the introduction of the offence of Causing Death by Careless Driving, the only offence that I can think of in which no intent or recklessness is necessary to attract a prison sentence of up to five years; simple human error is enough.

In a delicious irony, numerous Sun employees now find themselves on the receiving end of the justice system. Let's see how they like it.

It is another Sun policy to sneer at lawyers who act for unpleasant criminals, accusing them of caring more for money than for justice. You can be quite sure that the Sun arrestees will be represented by the finest silk-clad legal talent that money can buy.

Plate sin with gold, and the strong lance of justice hurtless breaks. Arm it in rags, a pygmy's straw doth pierce it
as the old West Midlands genius put it.