“I’m not going to pander to that.”

Overheard in court. Judge passing sentence.

Judge: I am impressed that you have made progress on the community order, but these offences that I have to sentence you for relate to the same victim and they pass the custody threshold. The sentence will be 12 months’ imprisonment, suspended for 2 years.

Court liaison probation officer: Your Honour [pause] because of the probation contract situation, he is being managed by one organisation under his community order but if  you pass a 12 month custodial sentence he will have to be managed by another organisation and lose the support he has had with the community order. [Pause] If you passed a sentence of one day under 12 months .. [voice trails off]

Judge [rocks backwards and forwards in chair]: Well … the less I say about that, the better. The Government should never have interfered with the Probation Service. I’m not going to pander to that. [Leans forward and peers over top of computer.] So there.

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