I have just had a conversation with my mum. It turns out that my 21 year old niece Leanne recently received an £50 on-the-spot fine for littering by discarding a cigarette end. That is bad enough, but what dismayed me most is that she went ahead and paid the damn thing. Fool of her. Allowing herself to be frightened into paying an illegal and purely fund-raising fine.

First of all, the Magna Carta - sealed by King John in the year 1215 - states that no fine shall be applied unless by a Court of Law.

Secondly, the Bill of Rights 1689 states that any promise of fine or forfeiture before conviction is illegal and void.

Litter wardens, traffic wardens, police offices, PCSO's etc etc, are not judges or juries, and are therefore not permitted to issue any fine/penalty/call-it-what-you-will. Any subsequent laws that say someone can be fined without first being convicted have not repealed any part of the Bill of Rights or Magna Carta, which shall take precedence over these newer, non-constitutional laws.

Several motorists have refused to pay fixed penalty notices because they claim that the Bill of Rights 1689 is fundamental to British law, and states that no one may be fined or financially penalised unless they have been convicted by a court. There are certain Constitutional Statutes - such as the Bill of Rights - which cannot be set aside by subsequent legislation unless this is specifically stated. The 1991 Road Traffic Act cannot implicitly repeal the relevant clause of the Bill of Rights, because it is a Constitutional Statute.

One man refuses to pay his parking fine unless the council takes him to court. Two years later they have still not done so. If we all demanded our rights to be found guilty before accepting punishment, the courts would grind to a standstill.

Why pay these illegal fines? All you have to do is first appeal and then offer to go to court. The councils and police have got away with this for so long, as people are scared into paying by threats of bigger fines, but often there is little or no evidence for a court conviction. If each and every one of these unlawful fund-raising fines were challenged, the system would collapse.
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Windows' coming home
Whereas Windows XP utilised the lovely Californian location Napa Valley for its desktop wallpaper, the forthcoming Windows 7 happens to feature a shot of good old Birmingham. For those that don't recognise what's shown above, that is the Selfridges building at the newly built Bullring in Birmingham - a big, blue carbuncle covered in metal discs - which just so manages to look like boobies in a sequin dress!

Still, it's nice that they have chosen to feature some UK locations for their new wallpaper collection.
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The small print

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