The perils of trying to get away with it

There are very few things calculated to make matters worse than futile efforts to get away with offences.

The most obvious example is to give a false name when being stopped by a Police Officer. If you do that you have added to whatever offence you have committed the offence of obstruct PC.  That in itself doesn’t carry with it a particularly harsh sentence, but if as a result you end up being charged in that name and you are eventually found out, that will almost certainly result in a charge of attempting to pervert the course of Public Justice which can only be heard in the Crown Court and which is almost inevitably going to lead to custody. It is an aggravating feature to involve somebody else.  Accordingly, giving the name of a friend or relative so they receive the Summons would be considered serious, but so is completing a form requesting details of the driver and putting somebody else’s details in.  Of course, if the person whose name you have put in then confirms the fiction by accepting the offence then you have both perverted the course of public justice.

Running away once arrested is also an offence which can only be heard in the Crown Court, that being escape from lawful custody.  Running away to prevent arrest can, of course, be obstruction.

Then there is the question of what happens in Court if you have entered a not guilty plea and are found guilty.  Not only is your sentence half as much again as it would have been had you entered a guilty plea at the first available opportunity, it also means that the costs will be greatly increased (presently in this area costs of £85 are generally asked for in the Magistrates’ Court on a guilty plea and £620 after conviction at trial).

Clearly I am not advocating pleading guilty when you are not.   What I am advocating, however, is, where the evidence is overwhelmingly against you, a world of pain can be avoided by holding your hands up.

Indeed, if you have no previous convictions, admitting a matter in interview may result in either a caution, whether conditional or not, or even possibly what the Police call a “local disposal” which means effectively agreeing an apology and perhaps compensation to the victim.

The important thing is, once in the Police Station, do not try to go it alone, but request a Solicitor.