One of the most serious offences that can come before a court is ‘perverting the course of justice’, this is because it strikes at the very heart of the justice system.
Due to its seriousness, immediate custody almost always follows, yet there are a surprising number of people who commit this offence, thinking that they will easily get away with it.
“Offences of perverting the course of justice are intrinsically so serious that they will almost always attract an immediate custodial sentence unless there are exceptional circumstances justifying a different course” (R v Cronin (2017)).
The Panicked Driver
The scenario is a common one, one person in the family already has 9 points on their driving licence, and a notice of intended prosecution drops through the door in relation to another traffic offence.
A traffic offence that is in itself so relatively minor that it will only result in 3 penalty points and a modest fine. But, in this instance due to the previous points on the licence, it will possibly result in the loss of that licence.
How easy for another person to take the blame, perhaps even name a relative abroad; who would possibly find out?
Of course, this is the breeding ground for many a mistake – that belief that you will not be caught.
In reality, however, the police take a keen interest in these cases, and often it requires only a modicum of detective work to reveal the true offender.
The consequences can be horrendous, the points follow, as does the disqualification which now becomes a reality with no realistic prospect of arguing exceptional hardship, and worst of all, two people are arrested, possibly in the early hours, in front of friends and family, maybe even young children.
And finally, a prison sentence follows. All to avoid a few penalty points.
The irony is that in many cases the disqualification could have been avoided if early advice had been obtained from an experienced road traffic practitioner.
Many otherwise decent hardworking people find themselves before the court through decisions made in panic. Before acting always seek advice.