Caven blog

Criminal law

Two men jailed for possessing legal drugs in landmark case

Two men have made legal history by becoming the first to be convicted for possessing a large quantity of legal drugs; namely, powdered caffeine and paracetamol mixed together.

According to the Daily Mail, 23-year-old Anthony Woodford, from Harlow in Essex and 44-year-old David Lewison, from west London, were both sentenced to eight years in jail at Canterbury Crown Court last Friday.


Cat-lover who continued to claim benefits after inheriting £50,000 cleared of fraud

Yesterday, a cat-loving woman was cleared of four charges of making false statements or concealing her true financial capital to obtain £22,000 in benefits, between 2005 and 2011, at Gloucester Magistrates Court.

According to the Daily Mail, she was acquitted even though she appeared to have hidden a £50,000 inheritance from the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) and her local council, while continuing to claim pension credits.


Teenager dies after using ‘laughing gas’ for legal high

An interim inquest at the Hertfordshire Coroner’s Court was opened and adjourned last Monday, according to the Telegraph, to report on the tragic death of a North London teenager who had used nitrous oxide (NO2) gas for recreational purposes.

17-year-old Joseph Benett, from Golders Green, suffered cardiac arrest and severe brain damage after inhaling NO2 (also known as ‘laughing gas’ and ‘hippycrack’) on August 31st, while socialising with friends.


Is ‘slopping out’ in UK prisons an abuse of human rights?

The Telegraph reported yesterday on the considerations of a High court judge when deciding whether to allow an appeal by a convicted felon, regarding the practice of ‘slopping out’, which lingers in some older UK prisons after being largely phased out in the 1990s.

In the original claim last year, two former inmates argued that slopping out, or using a bucket for toilet purposes when locked in a cell and the later emptying of the bucket at a sluice, contravened their human rights under Articles 3 and 8 of the European Convention (ECHR).


New law bans wheel-clamping on private land

From Monday this week, as reported by the Independent, it is an offence under the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 for wheel-clampers, either a land-owner or persons employed by a land-owner, to clamp, tow, or block-in vehicles on private land in England and Wales.

Previous to this date, individuals or firms employed to use immobilisation devices on cars against a release fee were licensed by the Security Industries Authority, under the Private Security Industry Act 2001.


Teacher in jail in France after disappearing with underage schoolgirl

A married 30-year-old maths teacher from the Bishop Bell Church of England School in Eastbourne has been arrested on suspicion of child abduction in the town of Bordeaux in south-west France.

Jeremy Forrest, from Lewes, East Sussex, has been remanded in custody at the high-security Gradignan prison to await extradition.


Should the law be changed to routinely arm British police officers?

The debate about whether police officers in the UK should be routinely armed has been re-visited, after the shocking deaths of two unarmed policewomen in Manchester on Tuesday.

The two officers, 23-year-old PC Nicola Hughes, and 32-year-old PC Fiona Bone, were killed in an incident in the Tameside district of the city, after being sent to check out a routine house burglary report.


Eight-year sentence for woman who aborted her own baby at 39 weeks

A 35-year-old mother of two from North Yorkshire, Sarah Catt, was sentenced yesterday at Leeds Crown Court, after pleading guilty in July to a charge of administering a poison with intent to procure a miscarriage.

Catt, who was married, had been having a seven-year affair with a work colleague. According to BBC News, she believed he was the father of the child. She concealed the pregnancy from her husband, but went to a hospital in Leeds for a scan at 30 weeks.


What will the criminalisation of squatting cost?

The activity of squatting, or taking possession of an unoccupied building and living there without paying anything to the property owner, has long been a topic that divides opinion.

Some see it as a positive action, where the homeless make good use of unused living spaces. Others see it as a parasitic act that is akin to stealing.


Is sex without consent always rape?

The topic of consent in relation to rape has been a hot topic recently, as reported by the BBC among other media outlets.

Firstly, there were controversial remarks last week by Respect MP George Galloway, which included sarcastic musings on whether men should ask permission before ‘every penetration’.


If you have been charged with a crime or motoring offence, you should get legal advice. In our blog we’ve covered current news on the UK criminal justice system. We also cover your frequent questions about speeding fines, driving offences and penalties.

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