Two weeks ago we fined a smack head for possession of heroin. Ordinarily, if you've ever seen them, a figure of pity, albeit that they do commit some horrendous crimes to get their drugs.
In this case, the defendant stood out because he reacted badly to being fined, stating that we were "Taking the food out of my poor bab's mouth." That is a bit rich as he had his child taken into care well over a year ago.
He was ordered to pay at a rate of Â£5 per week, being on benefits, at which point he burst into tears and started howling about how him and his family would be out on the streets. It was quite a performance. He lives alone.
I saw him this morning, in my local corner shop. Just in front of me in the queue he was. His total bill came to Â£114 and some odd pence...
his purchases being a trolley load of canned beer and a handful of lottery tickets.
After he left the shop I spoke to the shop owner, a good friend of many years, and discovered that this particular individual spent broadly the same amount on the same things sometimes once a week and occasionally twice a week.
I wish I had the money to be able to do that.