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UNITED KINGDOM
Judicial CP - February 1993



masthead

The Sun, London, 18 February 1993

I Quit Bench because the law's gone soft

Thugs must try really hard to get jailed now, says JP Stan

(extracts)

MAGISTRATE Stanley Rubin has quit the bench because he is fed-up with the law's inability to punish criminals. After 32 years as a JP in Bury, near Manchester, and Sefton, Merseyside, he says: "Officialdom has gone soft." Here Mr Rubin, 64, tells GUY PATRICK why he resigned ....

Rubin mugshotJPs like me have become disillusioned. Offenders are getting away with crime -- and they know it.

Young criminals are leaving court with a smirk across their faces and there's nothing we can do.

[...]

I grew up in the 1930s in an area of Bootle, Merseyside, where people didn't have money. But they didn't go around mugging grandmas.

I don't think human nature has changed that much, so what has gone wrong?

I think it's the erosion of authority. Teachers these days can't lay a finger on a child so the kids grow up not knowing right from wrong.

When I was a youngster, corporal punishment was still in force. One tearaway I knew once got four strokes of the birch. He turned into an angel and it cost society nothing.

These days you would be considered an animal if you suggested something like that. But if that punishment had been available to me as a JP, I would have used it for certain violent offenders.

Officialdom has gone soft. Thirty years ago when a defendant came before the bench he didn't know whether he would be going home that evening. There was an element of fear.

[...]

No young person should leave court with a smirk on his face saying: "I've got away with it."

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