Judge Delays Sentencing So Criminal Can Go on Vacation

It would be a shame for him to miss that trip to Tenerife
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 23, 2019 11:00 AM CDT
Judge Delays Sentencing So Criminal Can Go on Vacation
A view of the beach in Los Cristianos on Tenerife is seen Aug. 4, 2009.   (AP Photo/Carlos Moreno)

What's more important: starting a prison sentence for five crimes—including possession of drugs, a stun gun, and an extendable baton—or going on your planned vacation to the Canary Islands? One judge in Wales apparently thinks the latter. He agreed to delay 51-year-old Colin Watson's sentencing until May 31 so Watson can go on the prebooked holiday to Tenerife as the judge prepares his remarks. Somehow, even though the judge warned Watson to make sure to return to Wales and face his sentence—"I am trusting you. Don't let me down" were his exact words, per the Telegraph—opponents don't think his move sets a great precedent.

Those on the other side of things argue that the "bizarre" sentencing delay sends mixed messages to those who've been victimized by crime, and that allowing a criminal to travel abroad confuses the whole criminal process. The crimes Watson pleaded guilty to each carry sentences of up to seven to 10 years behind bars. But the judge said the adjournment of the sentencing date was "an act of mercy," despite acknowledging the crimes Watson pleaded guilty to were "very serious matters." Watson is going on the trip with his partner, the South Wales Argus reports. (More weird crimes stories.)

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