Friday, September 28, 2007

Great Idea

One of my newer colleagues is the Bench's equivalent of Tigger - very bouncy but not always well controlled. He is youngish and very keen, and adds to the overall balance of the Bench.
I sat with him in the summer when we were faced with a tall young man who admitted a public order offence. He submitted a means form showing something like £47 per week Jobseekers' Allowance, and we were, as usual, gloomily contemplating just how little we could fine him when Tigger nudged me, and whispered: "Why don't we ask the jailers to see if he has any cash in his property?". So we did, and they did. He had £177 on him when arrested, which seemed curious for a workless man on less than seven quid a day. We fined him and added the victim surcharge and costs, which came in all to £172. That left him his bus fare home - we do try to be reasonable, you know.

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