Tuesday, February 28, 2006


I went off to a far flung Crown Court today to deal with a preliminary hearing. The hearing went as planned as just as I was about to get in to my car to drive the return leg of the 150 mile journey to my office I received a phone call. The call was from my office telling me that one of our regular Clients was at the Magistrates Court local to where I was currently standing. I then made my way to the Court and arrived just after 11.00 am.

When I got to Court I could not see the Client and as I had only met them once before I could not be sure what they looked like. I shouted out the Client's name on the Court concourse several times and then heard a sniggering coming from behind me. A defendant, who was surprisingly well dressed, looked at me and said, "You've got your hands full with that one. They are a right loud mouth." I knew that already but I was glad to see that my Client acted the same in a 'foreign' court as she did in their local court.

Eventually my Client made their way to where I was standing and after discussing their case we went in to Court. The result of the case was they were fined £40 for being drunk and disorderly, and ordered to pay £34 in costs to the Crown Prosecution Service. Now, I considered this sentence to be very fair, and the CPS costs were rather low. My Client came out of the Court raging, "How am I gonna pay that? Are they 'aving a laugh or wot?" The Client's brother turned round and said, in a very sensible way, "Oh shut up, if you had been given a ticket by the Police it would have cost you £80".

After delivering my advice that the sentence was not appeasable by Client thanked me for her representation, agreed that the sentence was reasonable under the circumstances - but they still wandered off complaining about the injustice of having to pay £74 for being drunk and disorderly.


David said...

Sounds reasonable to me, 74 quid, that's about 28 pints of booze.

Say, three nights of drinking curtailed.... Some hope!!!!

Oh the hardships of life & the wickedness of the JP's, in daring to punish the "innocent" piss artiste!!!!!!

By the way, glad to see you back.

Gavin said...

That's not a bad way to measure out how the punishment will affect the Client, deduct the amount they can drink, smoke, inhale, inject, force in themselves against a financial penalty.

Sharon J said...

Poor soul. Fancy having to give up a weekend's booze money! My heart bleeds! ~Sharon J