Why are Spanish police operating a zero tolerance policy for minor offences?

Whilst motoring last month on hundreds of miles of excellent new and uncrowded roads in Spain, I was stopped by the Guardia Civil for going through a tunnel without putting my lights on. This was a very short tunnel, no bigger than a large bridge, and there was enough ambient light in the bright Spanish sun that the automatic lights didn't come on.

I explained this to him and my surprise that he was stopping me for such a petty offence. He agreed and was very apologetic and said that he had to fine me, and that he had been told by his superiors to fine anyone for any offence, no matter how trivial, in order to make up for huge budget cuts. Apparently you can be fined for putting a small shopping bag on the back seat, driving with no T-shirt on and for driving without backless shoes.

Asked on 11 March 2012 by IR, London EN2

Answered by Honest John
Yes, I got stopped for this about 30 years ago, but got off. Times have changed. The stupidity of the cop's superior is that this is going to put tourists off visiting Spain and bringing the country the money it so desperately needs.
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