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Tuesday, 4 November 2014

MPs Scream for longer driver jail again

Alok Sharma
Can you believe the naivety of some MPs when it comes to jail for drivers?

Maybe it's not naivety at all but Reading West MP Alok Sharma is repeating the same call for driver's jail sentences for death by dangerous driving, Story here 14 years, to be increased for every victim in a multi fatal accident as Caroline Dinenage did back in March. See my comments then.

Are these MPs really so foolish or do they hate drivers this much?

Drivers should be sentenced for their actions and not the outcome of their actions.

The reason is very simple. For a start dangerous driving is a matter of opinion and not fact. It is usually based on the subjective opinion of non expert and hostile witnesses who would never be allowed for any other case involving long jail terms. This is very important because in all other trials witnesses are restricted to fact and not their opinion. For drivers, the law is written to provide an entirely lower burden of proof for jailing them. This cannot be right. Why aren't MPs like Sharma and Dinenage not concerned about that?

Dinenage actually belongs to an All Party Parliamentary Group, with other anti drivers, Why Not Jail Drivers More Group (Justice On Our Roads Group)

But it isn't like a mass murderer who has deliberately aimed at each victim with a separated and deliberate attempt to kill them all. With drivers, their intent wasn't deliberate and the outcome of their action is purely terrible luck and coincidence. How can you ask for a jail term for exactly the same action simply because  the outcome was a lot more than just bent metal? Or because instead of one person dying, two did or three did?

Do these MPs not realise that if something is unintended and unforeseen, jail will simply not work as a deterrent. Jail is only a deterrent for the deliberate act and that doesn't mean road accidents.

This story shows more than anything why UK's 35 million drivers must have their own dedicated Parliamentary Group because until they do, Parliament is decidedly anti driver. 

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