Lawyers club together to pay defendant's fine

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The Independent Online
A PREGNANT woman, who has six children, was yesterday saved from a jail sentence by solicitors who held a whip-round in court to pay her fine.

Sharon Jones, 30, of Rassau, Ebbw Vale, Gwent, who is due to give birth in two weeks, broke down after she was sentenced to five days in jail for failing to pay a pounds 55 fine for not paying her television licence fee.

Carole Anthony, a solicitor at Ebbw Vale magistrates' court, was so moved by Mrs Jones's tears that she clubbed together with other lawyers to raise the pounds 55 to pay the fine. Mrs Jones said: 'I just couldn't afford it . . . then two solicitors walked into the room told me not to worry and handed me pounds 55. I was so grateful I felt like hugging them.'

Mrs Anthony, 43, said yesterday: 'Everyone felt sorry for this poor lady, so we very quietly put the money forward for the fine. We don't want to make a big thing of it - it just seemed the right thing to do.'

Mrs Jones has now promised to name her new baby after the solicitor - Carole, if it is a girl, or Anthony, if it is a boy.