Nick Hogan walks free

Nick Hogan, the British pub manager who lost his job and was sentenced to prison for six months after failing to pay £10,000 in fines for violating the smoking ban, has been freed thanks to voluntary contributions gathered online:

Speaking outside the prison, Hogan said: ”I’m devastated to be sent to jail. The smoking ban has cost me my pub, my job and my liberty.

”I’d like to thank everyone who donated money to get me out of jail, and all the well-wishers who sent me cards and letters while I was behind bars. I can’t thank them enough.

”It’s wonderful to know that so many people feel as strongly as I do about the smoking ban and its impact on ordinary working people.”

Blogger Anna Raccoon said: ”Nick Hogan is free because ordinary, hard-working members of the public, smokers and non-smokers alike, dug deep in their pockets to raise the money to return this man to his wife and home.

”The fact that so many people responded is a powerful message from the voting public that politicians would be well advised to heed.”

Congratulations to Hogan, and hopefully the publicity from this case will help raise the profile of opposition to smoking bans.

Comments

  1. Ed says:

    He’s jailed for noncompliance with a statute. Spinning it as anything else is absurd. The fine was based on compliance with a law, the refusal to pay the fine and subsequent contempt is rooted in the noncompliance.

  2. Jacob Grier says:

    @Ed: From what I’ve read he didn’t refuse to pay the fine as an act of civil disobedience; he lost his job and was unable to pay it. I would prefer to live in a society where people do not risk absurdly high financial penalties or jail time for allowing customers to smoke on their own property.

  3. Ed says:

    Imprisonment is, however, part of the punishment for a smoking ban violation and its resulting unpaid fine.

    Personally, I think this is a kind of passive resistance. If enough people refuse to obey the law, then the government either has to resort to repressive measures, such as throwing them all in prison, or repeal it.

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