Let’s just bill them into perpetual incarceration

And you thought they only did this kind of thing in third world countries…

Woman jailed for months over $700 fine

Atlanta, Georgia (Reuters) – A U.S. woman held in jail for seven months longer than her original sentence because she was too poor to pay a $705 fine was freed on Wednesday, her attorney said.

[…]

Hurley, 45, worked at a restaurant earning $700 a month and was supposed to pay the fine with that money, according to a petition filed this week.

But monthly bills including a $600 payment to the center and $52 for transportation left her with only $23.22, out of which she also had to buy soap, toothpaste and other items.

[…]

“The justice system is designed with the intention that the amount of money you have should not factor into the length of time that you are in prison. But that’s not the reality here,” said attorney Sarah Geraghty of the Southern Center for Human Rights.

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~ by SteveG on September 21, 2006.

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