Motorists face new £15 'victims levy'
- From: Vicko Zoomba <vicko_zoomba@xxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Fri, 1 Jan 2010 21:31:22 -0800 (PST)
Motorists in England and Wales fined for minor offences face having to
pay bigger penalties under a government scheme to compensate victims
Since 2007, a £15 surcharge has been added to the fines of all people
convicted of a crime, to raise money for support services for crime
Now ministers want to extend the scheme to on-the-spot fines and fixed
penalty notices for a range of offences.
They say the offences that could be targeted are not victimless
Under the current scheme, anyone fined by the courts pays an extra
'Stealth tax denial'
However, ministers believe the amount raised could be significantly
increased if it was extended to include people issued with on-the-spot
fines or fixed penalty notices.
This could include motorists caught speeding or flouting parking
restrictions and those guilty of disorder offences such as
shoplifting, writing graffiti or being drunk and disorderly.
Under the plans, a fine of £60 for speeding, using a mobile phone
while driving or not wearing a seatbelt would be increased to £75.
Government officials deny the move amounts to a stealth tax.
They argue that such offences are not "victimless crimes", saying
thousands are killed or injured on Britain's roads every year and
others have their lives ruined by anti-social behaviour.
The current levy, which was introduced in England and Wales as part of
the Domestic Violence, Crime and Victims Act 2004, works in
conjunction with the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme that pays
compensation to the victims of violent crime.
Prior to its launch, the Home Office - which was responsible for the
initiative at the time - said the surcharge was part of a series of
moves to "rebalance" the criminal justice system in favour of
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
So who's the victim if you're caught by a speed camera over the speed
I'm absolutely convinced now that the UK is completely out of control.
Ministers scrambling for the moral high ground are totally detached
from the reality of life and the effects of their ministerial actions.
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