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LAW IN A SHRINKING WORLD


LAW IN A SHRINKING WORLD

The judiciary and other practitioners of the law find themselves increasingly thrown together as our world becomes smaller mainly caused by the digital age and the rapid growth of populations.
Law in a Shrinking World
 gives you an insight into the professional and private world of magistrates and lawyers and the relationship between the former and a range of  perpetrators including members and ex-members of now-banned (in Queensland) criminal motor-cycle clubs.
A magistrate who belongs to a suburban bowling club finds himself playing against members of another club who recently appeared in front of him at court on a variety of charges. This causes embarrassment on both sides.
Attractive twin female lawyers find themselves in the middle of a world awash in drugs of all kinds and having to defend and advise clients many who have been hurt by partners using cannabis, cocaine, ice or fantasy, to name a few.
A gang of ex-bikies meet secretly to plan their illegal moves, renting a Sunday school hall as an unlikely cover.

In Store Price: $29.95 
Online Price:   $28.95

 

AMAZON

EBOOKS
Ebook version - $AUD9.00 upload.

ISBN: 978-0-9944084-4-0
Format: Paperback
Number of pages: 324
Genre:
Fiction

Cover: Clive Dalkins
 

BY THE SAME AUTHOR: 

Nobody Reads the Credits

Voyage of the Britannica

Adventure in Java…and other places

Temptation Island

Seize the Day…the Movie

An Australian Mining Tale: The Last Great Challenge

An Unlikely Text Book for Young Lawyers

Many Shades of Green

The Screenplay

 


Author
-
Gordon Carr
Publisher: Zeus Publications
Date Published:  2016
Language: English


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PREFACE

 

 

The world is getting smaller, there’s no denying it. Passenger jets fly between countries in a matter of hours when once it took many weeks of shipboard travel. No more is the shrinking world more noticeable than in what used to be the rarefied atmosphere occupied by the judiciary and other practitioners of the law. Recently, the area separating judges, magistrates, barristers and solicitors from the common herd was as long as the distance from the base of Mount Everest to the summit. Now, to the embarrassment of all, the two divisions of society are frequently rubbing shoulders on social occasions, at sporting events and in many other places, after first meeting, in many cases, in a court of law. So, we have run-of-the-mill crooks, plus bikies and ex-bikies caught up and crossing paths time and again with people they’d sooner run a mile to avoid and the same goes for those on the opposite side. On the plus side, the judiciary and others involved in law provide endless subjects for stories of fiction and sometimes humour.

 

 

 

THE BOWLS CLUB - sample. 

Magistrate Claude Bramley liked his bowls club and the weekend game, but he wasn’t too keen on many of the members. They seemed to look at him sideways, sort of calculating, suspicious, as if they didn’t quite trust him or understand what he did for a living. After all, he was just like all other men: pulled on his trousers one leg at a time, liked a cold beer and admired shapely women, although he couldn’t be too blatant about the latter. He knew that many of his fellow players were often talking about him, would suddenly look at him and burst out laughing. Several voiced the well-known suspicion that magistrates were prone to hand out soft sentences or run a revolving-door court. They just didn’t understand it was the law he had to uphold, not his personal feelings or prejudices. Then there was that smart-alec who called out loudly, ‘Hey, Claude, does yer arse go to sleep sitting on a bench all day?’

That was the bowls club but it didn’t end there; it even extended to his own home.

‘Will you be home for dinner at a reasonable hour tonight, Your Honour, and not held up till all hours with court matters as you usually are, considering whether to let the latest gang of young thieves go free, then seeing them give the finger to everybody as they leave the court grinning and going off to commit shop robberies all over again?’

‘Stop it, Maisie, it’s not funny,’ replied Claude. ‘You of all people should understand how difficult my job can be.’

‘Oh, I do, Claude, I do, or I try to, but I wish you had a proper job like other men. It would make my life so much easier.’

‘What do you mean, a proper job? Isn’t upholding the law a proper job?’

‘I don’t think it is. I mean a job like an engineer, a draughtsman or architect, builder or even someone upholding the law in a different way, a policeman, but a magistrate. People are starting to laugh at judges and magistrates.’

‘That’s the media for you. Journalists have no idea about law and how it applies to citizens or how people when arrested on suspicion are considered innocent until proven guilty. The proof has to be really provided and proven before a judgement can be made as to whether someone’s innocent or guilty.’

‘Yes, Claude, I know all that. You have explained it a zillion times. I realise the law is an ass. No doubt about that. But it impinges on my personal life, that’s why I wish you had a different job. For instance, if I meet somebody new, I’m introduced as the wife of His Honour Mr Claude Bramley, not just Maisie or Mrs Bramley. I’m immediately on the back foot and looked at as though I’m a bit odd and not to be trusted, or something like that. It’s because the law and people who are supposed to uphold it look as though they don’t give a toss for the victims but only consider how to let the perpetrators go. That’s the way it looks these days.’

 

At the end of the day, it wasn’t the court that kept Claude out late but his city club – not the bowls club, but the Professional Club that only admitted members of the professions as members. Admittedly, a club with such restrictions wasn’t very democratic but its members liked it that way. Claude joined a coterie of members which included judges and magistrates, barristers, solicitors, medical practitioners including veterinarians, and others on the fringes who just managed to squeeze in such as psychologists, physiotherapists and members of parliament. It was different from the bowls club which admitted a much different type of member, perhaps the more down-to-earth kind.

While Claude was relaxing at the club, crime of course was going on everywhere as it does. Naturally, Claude knew this, as did the police. There never seemed to be a break. Growers of illicit substances keep growing. Drug pushers keep selling their wares and the public keep buying and so on.

‘I tell you,’ said Claude to no one in particular, ‘it’s getting harder and harder by the day. The press are watching and commenting on every single case I have and it’s usually negative. “Somebody should have got much more, the sentence was too light, the victim’s family is devastated”, and so on.’

Claude took a hearty draught of his beer, which was served in a glass and not just a bottle, and sighed.

‘Yes,’ said magistrate Cedric Hamilton-Fynch. ‘I get much the same. You’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t. One can’t win these days. It’s getting to the stage where one wishes one hadn’t taken up law. I wouldn’t have if my father hadn’t pushed me into it.’ He sighed also and took a mouthful of his Chivas Regal Scotch and water. It made him feel better immediately. At least, with the job he had he could afford to drink Chivas Regal.

‘I don’t know, I think you chaps on the judiciary complain too much,’ said barrister Ivan Goodfellow. ‘You’ve got it made. You don’t have to worry about clients and whether they can pay or not, you’re on a generous salary which is regularly reviewed, always upwards.’ Mr Goodfellow’s choice was Wild Turkey Bourbon and Coke, Claude noticed.

‘It’s not the money, although we could all do with more, considering the cost of living and wives these days,’ said Claude. ‘It’s the regard; there’s no respect any more for the bench and the job we do. It’s no fun sitting up there watched every minute by the hawk-eyed media just waiting for that riveting headline.’

‘Let’s talk about something else. The cricket for instance,’ said solicitor Patrick Green. ‘We can’t talk shop all the time. It gets boring. Although as a matter of fact I was just going to mention my problem: fees. The public think we should work for practically nothing. They hate paying out for just about everything, thinking we’re over-charging. Even though they pay real estate agents fortunes, they grizzle about a few hundred for conveyancing.’ Mr Green seemed to have forgotten his suggestion to discuss cricket and took a sip of his cold glass of Chardonnay.

He’s just the sort of bloke who would drink white wine during the day, thought Claude. Not a man’s drink. Wine’s all right at night with the evening meal but not during the day.

‘So, how about the cricket? I don’t think the new lot of batsmen, and bowlers as well, measure up on the international scale as well as they used to, back in Ponting’s day – what do you think?’ asked someone from the depth of a leather chair.

‘Yes, you’re right, we just don’t seem to have the depth of talent emerging, thinking back to the glory days when Australia was number one on the world stage.’

‘I like the matches when we play the old enemy, the Poms,’ said Hamilton-Fynch. ‘Especially the Tests. I am able to watch from the members’ stand you know. Great stuff.’

‘There’s a lot of new players coming through now, though,’ said Patrick Green. ‘They’re pretty good, giving India and the West Indies a touch-up for instance.’

‘Cricket isn’t what it used to be,’ complained Hamilton-Fynch. ‘I much prefer Test matches but now we have One Day competitions and Twenty-20 games. Ruined cricket in my book.’

There was a combined murmur of agreement and shaking of heads.

Claude thought he had better get off home or Maisie would be nagging him again for being late.

 

‘Have you had a hard day, Claude? You’re looking tired,’ remarked Maisie.

‘No harder than usual. Just the same, run-of-the-mill cases. They come and go one after the other, most pleading not guilty. The tiring part was the inane conversation at the club afterwards.’

‘The bowls club?’

‘No, the other one I go to in the city.’ Claude slumped in a chair, ran a hand over his face and yawned. ‘It’s good to be home, Maisie, believe me, and I don’t want to hear another word about cricket or the court.’

‘I wasn’t going to mention cricket. Cricket’s the last thing I would discuss but what about the court? That always interests me.’

‘OK, here’s something I’m really sick and tired of, listening to endless excuses by people charged with simple offences, motorists who keep speeding and driving after losing their licences and paying fines with bad grace. OK Maisie, I think I’d like another drink. Join me, you have one too.’

‘Oh, that I will, Claude, that I will.’


 

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