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Drunk Whilst Driving

 
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mark occomore



Joined: 07 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 12:44 pm    Post subject: Drunk Whilst Driving Reply with quote

I can't understand what example the judge has shown towards drunk drivers letting off Graeme Swann. Plain a simple if your caught drunk behind a wheel of a motor vehicle whatever kind it is you should be fined and banned for driving. It's a disgraceful act, and he should have lost his licence.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/motoring/...g-excuses.html

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/cri...k-driving.html
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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 12:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe his lawyer successfully argued that there was some kind of legal irregularity in the way the blood sample was either taken and/or processed which meant that the judge had no choice but to dismiss the case

Rules are there for good reasons and if the police cut corners or otherwise fail to follow proper procedures then any person charged with such an offence is entitled to challenge this

Having said that I am not in any way condoning people who drink and drive and I think the person concerned in this case was fortunate in having funds to pay the best lawyer available

Interestingly going back many years when the drink drive legislation first came about there was quite a famous legal case where a motorist was breathylised and found to be over the limit and was then taken to the police station for a blood sample to be taken
As the police doctor was about to do so the motorist said that he did not object to giving a blood sample but wanted the doctor to take it from the left ventricle of his heart knowing full well that this was impossible without killing him
The motorist was charged with failing to supply a sample of blood but was acquitted because he successfully argued that he had the right to specify from where in his body the sample should be taken

Needless to say amending legislation was rushed through to plug this legal loophole at break neck speed and such a defence would certainly not work today
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John W



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 1:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ruddlescat wrote:
I believe his lawyer successfully argued that there was some kind of legal irregularity in the way the blood sample was either taken and/or processed which meant that the judge had no choice but to dismiss the case



The gentlemanly thing to do, though, would be to do the police a favour and point out police errors, and to admit the offense. Some celebs/richlist think they are above the law.

John
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mark occomore



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 1:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just one word for it TAXI
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mark occomore



Joined: 07 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 1:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ruddlescat wrote:
I believe his lawyer successfully argued that there was some kind of legal irregularity in the way the blood sample was either taken and/or processed which meant that the judge had no choice but to dismiss the case

Rules are there for good reasons and if the police cut corners or otherwise fail to follow proper procedures then any person charged with such an offence is entitled to challenge this

Having said that I am not in any way condoning people who drink and drive and I think the person concerned in this case was fortunate in having funds to pay the best lawyer available

Interestingly going back many years when the drink drive legislation first came about there was quite a famous legal case where a motorist was breathylised and found to be over the limit and was then taken to the police station for a blood sample to be taken
As the police doctor was about to do so the motorist said that he did not object to giving a blood sample but wanted the doctor to take it from the left ventricle of his heart knowing full well that this was impossible without killing him
The motorist was charged with failing to supply a sample of blood but was acquitted because he successfully argued that he had the right to specify from where in his body the sample should be taken

Needless to say amending legislation was rushed through to plug this legal loophole at break neck speed and such a defence would certainly not work today


So basically if he killed someone would he got a even lighter sentence Shocked.. Luckly he didn't, but these cases which are bought against celebrities seem to be a laughing stock. The law needs to be tougher towards drink drivers.
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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 1:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

John there are a couple of things to mention there

Firstly if the error was made in the way the blood sample was taken then the accused would not know at that time that there had been an error unless he happened to be a criminal lawyer and it would only come to light later when a lawyer got involved so it would be impossible for him to point out any error to the police

Secondly if he did point out the error to the police as soon as he found out about it after taking legal advice by then it would be too late and pointless because the blood sample has to be taken within a specified period and by then the period would have long expired
I am of course assuming that the accused did not have his lawyer present at the police station which is rare in these type of cases because of time issues

The other thing in this case was that as I understand it there were some extenuating circumstances as Swann had not intended to drive whilst unfit but unfortunately he came home to find his cat was trapped under some floorboards and drove a short distance to a DIY store to buy some tools to get the cat free
Of course he should have got a taxi or got someone else to drive him but as a cat lover I know that if I encountered a similar problem my natural instinct would be to want to help the cat as quickly as possible but I'd like to think I wouldn't behave so stupidly

Of course there is also the fact that by not attending to the cat he would have left himself open to the possibility of being prosecuted by the RSPCA for animal cruelty

As for the concept of him simply admitting the offence yes of course he had the option to plead guilty and perhaps he should have done so putting forward the unusual circumstances in mitigation but in the real world I've yet to meet any client who pleads guilty to any offence if they don't have to
Sad but unfortunately true Sad
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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 2:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mark, I've certainly nothing against making the law tougher for convicted drink drivers but once again you're missing the point

It doesn't matter how tough you make it if the police do not follow the required procedures then they are not going to secure a conviction even if the maximum penalty was life imprisonment
What is required is more care in processing cases in order to secure more convictions

And as far as your comment about the possibility of the offender killing someone is concerned if that had happened he probably would have been charged with the seperate offence of causing death by dangerous driving or possibly even manslaughter but it still wouldn't have made a blind bit of difference over the outcome of the drink drive charge
Procedures are there for a good reason and cannot be ignored whether some people like it or not
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John W



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 7:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ruddlescat wrote:
the accused would not know at that time that there had been an error

he came home to find his cat was trapped under some floorboards

of course he had the option to plead guilty (


Yes I expect the accused would not know, he was drunk.

that cat would have surivived another day. A knocked-down pedestrian might have died.

The gentlemanly thing, as I say, under the curcumstances, wouuld be to plead guilty.

Now this 'celeb' has his character tarnished by getting off from conviction that you or I would not have.
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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 7:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes John at the end of the day like most things in life it all comes down to money

Rich celebrities can afford to pay the very best lawyers and as a result often avoid convictions where less well off people might not

However we shouldn't assume that all celebrities are rich as there have been quite a few who have gone bankrupt over the years but they are probably the exception rather than the rule

What worries me is not so much the issue of celebrities sometimes thinking they are above the law but more the fact that many of our MPs who actually make the law would appear to think that they can ignore the law judging from the recent expenses scandal

If they have that attitude it's hardly surprising that others often think the same
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mark occomore



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the lack of consideration also lies at the court of justice, crown prosecution and the police. Yes the airheads who think they are above the law will not only take their lives, but others will go with them. Hopefully by his mistakes, he and others will learn, but time will tell.
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ColinB
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 9:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mark occomore wrote:
I think the lack of consideration also lies at the court of justice, crown prosecution and the police


What does "consideration" mean in this context, exactly? Are you suggesting that the both forces of law and the judiciary should be more biased in favour of the prosecutors? If so, is this another example of your wanting to condemn people before they're even found guilty in a court of law?
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John W



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 11:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Colin,

I think Mark is noting that even when someone IS guilty their lawyer will work hard to find a technicality to drop the case.

This celeb (I've forgotten his name) was over the alcohol limit, nobody has denied this. I repeat nobody has denied this. He broke the law, he put other people's lives at risk, nobody has denied this.

But he's free because of investigative work by his lawyers.
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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 11:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

But that's what the lawyers get paid for John

It's no good blaming the judge or the CPS for a problem which was caused by the police fouling up

What people should be asking is why can't the police get a simple procedure right because if they did there would be no opportunity for the clever lawyers to do their stuff

And of course if it became clear early on in the case that there was a problem with the blood sample then the CPS should probably have discontinued the prosecution at that point so as to avoid a great deal of expense which comes from you and I as taxpayers in circumstances where they had virtually no chance of successfully securing a conviction
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