Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The DVD Police

It would appear that all major crime has been solved in Canada.

A Chateauguay, Que., couple can't believe they ended up being criminally charged after forgetting to return some DVDs.

"It was just ridiculous. I can't believe the police took the time and put the effort into this," Helena Pawl told CTV Montreal on Monday.

The couple claim to not have gotten any reminders to return the DVDs and the store eventually reported their overdue bill to the police. The police contacted the couple and they promptly returned the DVDs to the store. End of story? Not quite.

A few months later, the Surete du Quebec, the provincial police force, pulled Mainville over for speeding. While processing his licence, they found a warrant out for his arrest.

"They used a loudspeaker, telling me to exit the vehicle and put my hands on the hood," Mainville said in French.

DVD late-returners obviously being a high risk category of criminal.

The couple has hired a lawyer to fight the case, spending about $1,000.

The bill for the DVDs was $81.

At their court date, the video store didn't even show up. While that meant an acquittal, Mainville now wants his name and mugshot completely cleared from police files. But hiring a lawyer to help with that would cost yet more money.

But of course, it couldn't be simple.

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