Above The Law: How The Rich Can Buy Themselves Out Of Trouble

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16 year old Ethan Crouch attained notoriety when he killed four people and seriously injured two in a devastating drunk driving incident. Instead of receiving jail time, Crouch was sentenced to spending an undefined amount of time in a luxury rehabilitation facility. His probation is limited to 10 years, during which he has to refrain from consuming drugs or alcohol and cannot drive.

Psychologists blamed the wealthy, privileged parents for overly coddling and letting the kid run wild without restrictions. The judge maintains that this assessment didn’t play a part in her ruling.

 The rehabilitation centre, which costs a massive $450,000 a year, will be paid for by Crouch’s parents. If Crouch breaks the terms of his probation, he could face up to ten years in jail, but otherwise, he won’t have to spend any time in a juvenile prison.

 Crouch obviously had some top motoring lawyers, working on his case.

 Irreparable Damage
Prosecutors called for the maximum 20 year sentence and were shocked when Crouch received no jail time at all. Sergio Molina and Soliman Mohmand were knocked around in Crouch’s car on impact – Mohmand received internal injuries and broken bones, whereas Molina is likely to be paralysed for life. Molina’s family have already amassed one million dollars in medical costs and will have to constantly care for Sergio from now onwards.

Even though Crouch’s blood-alcohol levels were three times over the legal limit, Crouch has shown no remorse for what he’s done and didn’t apologise for the incident. A little remorse on his part would have at least marginally comforted the victims.

It’s hoped that Crouch will get the therapy he needs at the centre, rather than none behind bars. But for Eric Boyles (who lost his wife and daughter in the incident), and Sergio Molina’s family (who now have to look after their paralysed son), this doesn’t go far enough. They believe that Crouch was given a forgiving sentence because he could afford the expensive defence team, experts to comment on the case, and the rehabilitation fees.

Mr Loophole
Rich members of society have always gotten off lightly, when it comes to driving offences. Mr Loophole, Nick Freeman, is famous for getting celebrities off the hook (if they can afford him). Most recently, Coronation Street actress Barbara Knox. Some other famous clients include Alex Ferguson (who avoided a traffic jam by driving down the hard shoulder of a motorway), Andrew Flintoff (accused of driving 87mph in a 50mph zone), David Beckham (again, speeding), and Jimmy Carr (spotted on his mobile phone).

Celebrities are often caught committing crimes, but rarely go to jail. Is this because they have the money for expensive lawyers? Wealth undoubtedly plays a part in the justice system, but this can’t be fair. When it comes to legal sentencing, the poor and the rich should receive equal treatment, otherwise justice isn’t justice. If Crouch had been from deprived circumstances, would he receive the same punishment? Are the rich really above the law? 

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