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Arrods | 13:21 Tue 16th Apr 2024 | Law
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I've been following - and enjoying - a You Tube channel run by a US lawyer. I got a bit of a shock though to find out it's possible to swap out certain traffic offences, all condoned by prosecutors, defenders and judges.  

Example.  You get stopped for a speeding violation. If you're nice, you can get the offence swapped out for, say, a defective rear light. This is done because it doesn't appear on your driving record and, more importantly, it doesn't affect your insurance. It's all perfectly legal and above board. Well, there you go.  



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I guess your face would have to fit to benefit from this.

Well they've always had plea bargaining to oil the wheels for all sorts of crimes haven't they?

// If you're nice//

What constitutes being nice?

The courts are a much greater part of American life than it is ours. Juries still used for civil cases.

The case horse trading and guilty pleas for lesser charges solve 80% cases - they say

Post Off ice Horizon ( OK we will drop theft if you plead guilty to false accounting) - the (UK)  judge has stopped raising his eyebrows when he hears that now

A similar arrangement takes place in Magisttrates' Courts in England & Wales every day of the week. The Registered Keepers of vehicles detected (say) speeding by camera are sent a "request for driver's details" so that the police can take action against the driver. If this request remains unanswered (either because it was not delivered, the response was lost or the request was simply ignored) the RK will see prosecution for an offence which, on conviction, carries six points and a hefty fine. However, when he attends court the prosecution will normally accept a guilty plea to the speeding offence in return for dropping the "fail to provide driver's details" offence. 

There is also widespread plea bargaining when dangerous driving is charged. There is often acceptance by the CPS to a guilty plea of careless driving.

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I asked the US lawyer (tongue in cheek) if it worked for murder cases. Apparently, it does not. 

US Justice. A misnomer surely...

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OK, I don't hold a torch for insurance companies (albeit they pay my pension) but if speeding convictions statistically reflect risk, it does seem bizarre that, despite having committed the same offence, you can avoid the insurance 'penalty' by agreeing that you had a broken rear light when probably it was working fine. 

I asked the US lawyer (tongue in cheek) if it worked for murder cases. Apparently, it does not. 

swappsie ? should do - Murder for manslaughter....Alternative pleas are allowed in England for capital crime and horse trading ( I thought) common - not guilty to murder but guiltyto manslaughter thro diminished responsibility

NJ wd know - I am just a silly old ABer

What constitutes being nice?

not being Hispanic or Afro carribean

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PP. No, I meant if I was charged with murder, could I swap it for using a hosepipe during a drought?

Some (all ?) nations have some bleedy stupid practices.

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