An individual was charged with possession of class b drugs (Cannabis). He knew he was about to go to prison for an unrelated and much more serious matter.
He pleaded not guilty and his defence, paid for by the tax payer, amounted to "Prove the stuff you took from me was cannabis". He also refused to accept written statements, insisting upon the attendance of witness(es). He also demanded "proof of continuity", meaning that every individual who had been involved with handling the cannabis had to attend and give evidence as to their involvement, from the arresting officer, through to the forensic scientist. We heard that there were a total of eleven witnesses required to attend.
The trial was set for today and, as he was lead into the dock, now being a serving prisoner, his advocate asked the Court to put the charge to him again, at which point he pleaded guilty.
The prosecution informed the Court that the costs incurred by the CPS in bringing a forensic scientist up from London to give evidence and the cost of the analysis plus witness attendance costs amounted to Â£3350.
The defendant found this hugely amusing and said "Don't forget my 10% sentence discount".
He is, at the moment serving a four year sentence so the sentence we handed down, of six weeks, would make no difference as it would begin from today.
We were unable to order costs as he was a serving prisoner without "substantial means".
After he was taken down, his advocate admitted to a feeling of revulsion at having to deal with the defendant and told us that when he questioned the defendant's decision to plead guilty was told something to the effect that all he wanted to do was to *uck up the system and make it as costly as possible and that he had never had the slightest intention of going through a trial.
Some days are not so good