…today an elderly pet shop owner told how she was entrapped into selling a goldfish to a 14-year-old schoolboy, then warned she could face jail.
She had breached a law introduced in 2006 which bans selling live fish to anyone under 16.
After a prosecution estimated to have cost taxpayers £20,0000, Joan Higgins, 66, a great-grandmother who has never been in trouble before, has been forced to wear a tag on her ankle like common criminal and given a seven-week curfew.
[Authorities] sent the 14-year-old schoolboy into the shop to carry out a test purchase and Mr Higgins sold the youngster a goldfish without questioning his age or providing any information about the care of the fish.
Related: (I particularly enjoyed the accompanying
accurate “racist” cartoon!)
I remember being in Blackpool for a Labour Party conference and as I made my way from my hotel at 9.30 in the morning, I had to step into the road to avoid a family walking four-abreast on the pavement in the direction of the seafront.
Mum, dad, eight-year-old son and six-year-old daughter were dressed in matching turquoise shell-suits. They all had earrings and wore baseball caps. The father’s cap was distinguished by a plastic dog turd stuck to the peak, beneath a logo which proclaimed ‘Sh**head’.
They were breakfasting on fish and chips from polystyrene containers, washed down with Irn-Bru in the case of the children and Special Brew for the parents. (…)
The novelty baseball cap could have been an ironic, post-modern take on the nature of unbridled consumerism or a witty protest about societal stereotyping.
Then again, they could just have been scum.