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Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by flango, Aug 18, 2009.
Good interview with Nick Freeman (Mr Loophole) on Autotrader
I should have gone to see him when I got my 38mph ticket in a 30mph zone (in what I thought was a 40mph zone, downhill in the Snowdonia Mountain Range.) The only speeding ticket I've ever had.
I wonder how much he charges.
For the man in the street its probably wiser to just swallow the points and fine.
It's not as bad as you think, depends on the severity of the offence.
It can be as little as £350. Nick Freeman and his team are very good but beware that if the case develops into a full blown argy bargy job you could be left with an enormous bill perhaps £25K and even if you win you will not get it all back as the charges will be far more than the 'standardized' rates allowed for by the court. Freeman and Co offer a 'Keep on Driving' scheme were you can pay a monthly fee in return for free advice on cases before deciding to proceed to court. I'm a member and it does work.
Yep £99 per year I think, £8.25 a month for the best advice in the business should you need it, sounds pretty good value to me.
You don't hear much about the cases he loses but I am sure there are a fair few.
I'm not surprised he wants speed and alcohol limits lowered. More business for him and his like.
I find it sickening that he boasts of getting celebutards acquitted not because they didn't commit the offence, but because one of the many people involved in the prosecution failed to jump through all of the correct hoops in precisely the right order.
I guess it's up to Mr Freeman to take issue with the first part of your statement, but I'll comment on the second part.
The Police, CPS & Mag's Courts collectively treat motoring offences as a conveyor-belt process - partly because there are so many of them borne of legislation that has made it very easy to lay a charge, and partly due to the mistaken belief amongst some of each group that if an allegation of a motoring infraction has been made then it must be true. As such, the whole process of gathering evidence and presenting it in the way the law requires to secure a conviction is treated with less respect than it should be. Mr Freeman (and others) have managed to successfully demonstrate the slipshod way that some of those who are supposed to detect an offence, some of those who present the evidence and some of those who we trust to judge us behave. Is that wrong? In my view, emphatically no.
If you pass enough laws, eventually you make everyone a criminal. The UK State lost sight of that truth long ago. That people like Mr Freeman take on a slipshod system and exploit the faults in it to secure acquittals should be celebrated, not thought of as some sort of immoral activity to be derided.
FWIW, recent figures released by the Department for Justice (even that name has a sinister ring about it, don't you think?) show that at least 25% of motoring charges that are challenged in court are found in favour of the defendent. I don't think Mr Freeman's practice is that busy, so perhaps the people concerned were (shock! horror!) actually innocent? A final thought: there's no such concept as "morally guilty" in the eyes of the law - you're either found guilty based on the evidence or you're innocent.
Then we are lucky.....in France the policeman is always right -- if he says so and no arguments accepted. Fined on the spot - pay up or else...no courts to wangle ...and therefore open to abuse and corruption..
I think I prefer our legal system - with all its inherent faults.
Yes, but how it was 10 or 15 years ago. I doubt we'll prefer what it's rapidly developing into.
It's a fact that no legal system is perfect, but adversarial systems (as in the UK and America) have different imperfections to inquisitorial systems such as in France. Inquisitorial systems rely heavily on establishing the facts and then determining culpabilty; adversarial systems rely less on what the facts are and more on the presentation / interpretation of "evidence". Which is better is a matter for debate.
But back to the UK where for perhaps well-intentioned reasons (or perhaps not) our legal system has for a number of years been the subject of changes that are very little to do with justice and everything to do with expediency. The latest wheeze is that innocent motorists who successfully challenge their accuser (i.e. the State) in court are to suffer financial penalty for having the temerity to not roll over and accept an unwarranted sanction against them. That is far removed from any concept of justice and stinks in any language. Please write to your MP and protest in the strongest terms before you find yourself punished as a result of an unfounded accusation.
So Mr Freeman & others expose incompetance amongst the Police, CPS and the Magistrates and you don't think that's a public service?
HMG has managed to paint itself into a corner on this one. It has enacted poorly drafted legislation to which it has then added multiple "band-aid" sticking plasters which have further unintended consequences and further complicate an already complex situation. The net effect of this is that the average copper on the beat has precious little chance of getting it 100% right except in the most straightforward circumstances, the CPS (who manage to employ a significant proportion of the inexperienced and the incompetent) either fail to apply their own tests regarding prosecution correctly, lose important documents, or just plain don't understand the overly complex law they're charged with prosecuting and the Magistrates are advised by sometimes partisan and sometimes equally ignorant Legal Advisors. Little wonder respect for the law and the justice system has evaporated.
The root problem seems to be that HMG has deployed automated detection equipment for certain motoring offences that (surprise, surprise) has detected the fact that a large proportion - probably the majority - of normally law-abiding citizens going about their normal daily lives routinely commit motoring infractions. By definition, these infractions generally have no unwelcome consequence yet in the headlong rush to prosecute more and more people for ever more trivial offences, the system has become overloaded and the majority of effort seems to have been expended in trying to make the prosecution process cheaper and quicker and to hell with any notion of justice. Nobody has actually stepped back and asked the obvious question: If the only way we can prosecute (say) 2 million motoring offences per year is to severely compromise the detection, prosecution and determination processes, have we actually got the offence criteria wrong? Or is there something else we could and should be doing to reduce the number of infractions (either real or imaginary)?
yes I do think genuine incompetence should be exposed but what I do not like to see is guilty people stick two fingers up and walk out of court without justice being served because they have paid a sharp lawyer to find a loop hole.The people of this country want a system that identifies truth in each case and perhaps I am alone but I do not find myself cheering when a rich celebrity walks out laughing from court. The Lockerbie situation has just given me one more reason to not want to admit being a British subject.
I am with you on automatic detection equipment as I do not feel that these take into account time of day, road conditions,weather, school holidays etc etc.
Wonderful, that's made my week. Thanks!