Are you depressed? No helmet!

Naples’ ever-resourceful scooter riders have found a new way to get out of fines for not wearing helmets: claiming they’re depressed. A rash of very similar cases – at least ten – have occurred over the last two weeks, local daily Il Mattino reported on Tuesday.

The young offenders have been trooping into courts armed with doctor’s certificates stating they are “depressed or under unusual stress,” it said.

Sympathetic justices of the peace have quashed a string of fines and other penalties. Police in the sprawling southern city, which is known for its chaotic traffic, are worried that, the way things are going, they’ll be letting them off if they say they have a headache. There’s also the suspect these are copycat cases.

Naples is famous in Italy for the quick wits of some law-avoiding citizens: a day after new seat-belt law came into effect, T-shirts with belts printed on them were drawing crowds of eager buyers. Just add that in Italy you can always find a judge willing to defy commonsense, and you get madness like these.

Sostieni Phastidio!

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