Author: Sir James Fitzjames Stephen, A Judge of the High Court of Justice, Queen’s Bench Division
Tamilnadu Police Department
Criminal Investigation Department Review, 2007: Issue: IV
Criminal Justice System Precept and Practice
Tr. A.X.Alexander, IPS., (Retd. DGP)
There was a burglary in 1997 … … … within three hours the thief was apprehended and the property was recovered. He was sent to the prison and subsequently detained under Act 14 of 1982. He had 54 convictions.
... ... ...After the release, the thief and his wife came to see us and I asked him why he had committed thefts so many times. He replied that he was an assistant in masonry work and that he had committed petty felonies only and not definitely the cases shown in his conviction records and the police had taken him whenever they could not fix an accused.
I perused his conviction records and most of the offenses for which he was punished were motorcycle thefts. From his looks I could guess that he did not know even to start a motorcycle. I confronted him why he had committed thefts of motorcycles. He replied that he had not committed theft of any motorcycle but whenever motorcycles were recovered in series he was fixed as the thief. I sent for the Inspector who booked him, to know from him whether the allegation of the thief was true. The Inspector stood in silence for long and muttered that it was true and I told him that he has children and wished that he sinned no more... ... ..