Government rhetoric urges us to see young offenders as parasites. After a recent term of jury service I have come to believe that the reverse is often true. What I saw was the professional middle-class making a comfortable living out of acts of blundering defiance among the uneducated. It was disturbing.
I was involved in a series of fairly minor trials, though they were life-changing for the participants. Delivering a verdict is always a serious matter. But that responsibility did not come my way, for not one of these cases reached a conclusion.