Talk on the street

A NEW law states that anyone given a fine after being convicted of a criminal offence in court will have to pay an additional £15. The money will go towards a fund to help improve services for victims of crime. The amount is a flat-rate charge and will ap

A NEW law states that anyone given a fine after being convicted of a criminal offence in court will have to pay an additional £15.

The money will go towards a fund to help improve services for victims of crime.

The amount is a flat-rate charge and will apply no matter how big or small the fine.

Reporter ADAM LAZZARI went out to ask people what they think about this new law.


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Wendy Lupson, from Haddenham.

"I think it's outrageous, to just stick this extra fine on without telling people. What extra victim support will all of this money provide? I recently had my number plates stolen from my car and I had a leaflet all about victim support sent to me. It was all a bit much, I didn't feel tormented or anything.

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"Victims of more serious crimes might need help and support, but I just think this new law is absolutely crazy."

Jane Clancey from Cambridge, with Evie.

"I'm a bit sceptical. If this new law doesn't interrupt other schemes in place to provide victims of serious crimes with compensation then it could be a good idea, but it's hard to know what the Government is up to sometimes. It's a bit harsh to make someone who's been caught speeding have to pay the extra money and I don't like the idea of enforcing a blanket payment for every one.

"I think the Government already receives enough money from speed cameras, but if I was a victim of a horrible crime, I would be grateful for any compensation I could get."

Monica Askay, 58, from Wilburton.

"It's a good idea in theory, but I think it would be fairer to fine a percentage of the original fine instead of just a flat-rate charge for everyone. I'm not sure if it will work because some people struggle to pay fines already. I just think the law needs to be thought through a lot more. There should be a minimum limit at which you don't have to pay any extra money, because it's really not fair the way it is."

Ron Westmoreland, 61, from Needingworth.

"This is just another hidden tax and it's totally out of order; you can be made to pay this extra £15 if you're fined for speeding or anything. It's a very bad idea and support for victims of crime should come from general taxation."

Richard Thompson, 42, from Ely.

"People should know before they get to court what fines they can expect to pay and everything should be a lot more transparent.

"You get taxed for everything these days and we're not living in a free country anymore.

"I agree with the idea to give victims of crime more support, but it should be done properly and in a different way. Fifteen pounds is too much for someone convicted of a petty crime."

Danny Smith, 41, from Ely.

"I honestly have no problem with it and think it is a very good idea. At the end of the day, if you commit a crime you have to suffer the consequences. Fifteen pounds is about right, it's not a huge amount, but it should put some people off re-offending, and more of our taxes can go on public services.

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