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back to article UK prisoners offered data cabling training

UK lags will be offered training in networking skills in a bid to bridge the skills shortage in IT. The scheme to establish a vocational learning academy at Wandsworth prison, London will be delivered by Cisco and the HM Prisons Service. Cisco reckons one in five jobs in data and network cabling go unfilled, a shortfall …

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I hope they profile the criminals carefully

Laying cables, especially large installations, usually means being given building schematics.

I can't see that supplying this to people with a history of breaking and entering would be a particularly good idea.

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Cat Burglar 5

Genius!

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Paris Hilton

Jail birds

This is something I don't understand. This training could be given to many other people, who haven't forefitted their right to society, but instead, its the ones who choose crime and then get a career path.

Fair enough we should do something to get these people back on the straight and narrow, but why not offer training schemes to teenagers who are leaving school and looking for a career path in IT, who maybe don't want to go to University and come out with a massive pile of debt.

Paris. because my student debts are about as deep as her murky depths...

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Emj
Flame

Nick the kit, get the training...

Bl@@dy ridiculus - so prisoners get rewarded for their crimes with courses that would cost me a grand plus. I am looking for a networking job, can't find sh!t - well done Cisco/HMP, lets flood the already troubled industry with yet more vacancy competitors.

Yes, bad day - just been made redundant... From a networking job.

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Coat

Oh great

As a Cisco networking student, this comes as great news that the people who steal/kill will come out of prison only to go and take jobs with a industry standard certification, that honest Academy students should be getting.

F*** It I'm becoming a florist!

Mines the one with the roses in the pocket....

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Coat

And the security implications are?

Forgive me if I'm wrong, but do not engrs working in comms rooms or generally any IT post in a large company have to have some sort of security clearance?

Whilst all in favour of the lag/ds rehabilitation I can see them being restricted to low level or residential work

Mine's the one with the big black arrows on it

Ian

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Paris Hilton

Get locked up..... get qualified

WTF!!!!! I've recently been looking at training in order to increase my marketability and can only get a 40% grant from business link. the rest I have to stump up myself.

However, if I want to get it for free looks like I'll have to do a spot of armed robbery and get put away for a few years with an almost guarunteed job at the end of it!?!?!?!?! That's just taking the p*ss especially in this current echonomic climate where IT workers are competing fang and tooth for whatever's out there atm.

What is going on in this country? I'd ask if Screaming Lord such was in charge, but I'm damn sure he'd do a better job than the current clowns in charge.

Paris due to the complete no brainer

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Happy

More silly silly people

It seems they've found somewhere cheaper yet closer to home than India !

And they're not going to reoffend are they ?

Well not their former modus operandi at least, not when they'll have all those new skills to bring to bear.

Why should our youth be signing up for 4 years at uni and £15,000 of debt, just TWOC a neighbours car and get caught selling crack with a ho in the back, get sent to Wandsworth and you'll jump the job queue saving yourself £15,000 in the process, not to mention all those other skills that you'll pick up once you land in Wandsworth nick.

Er, what's the betting uncle Gordon will decide that downloading music from t'internet deserves a spell in the chokey, hmmm, I might get a Cisco certificate yet!

ALF

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Coat

@El Reg

ref: Jail birds

I see you've successfully deployed the Tw*t-o-tron - well done!

(mine's the striped one, thanks)

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Yes!

We certainly don't have enough criminals in IT.

What's the collective noun for bot-herders?

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Typical UK - praise the guilty, condemn the innocent

as usual give the crims an incentive to misbehave so they get further perks instead of offering training to IT grads who cant get a foot on the IT ladder period.

Hmmm wasn't the government considering allowing offenders to vote from jail.....now it all makes sense....prop up your church puppet government with a captive audience of voters.

So much for taking Britain forward....more like heading back to the dark ages or puritanism.....

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Lovely

So I struggle for 40 hours a week and with all the bills, debts and other general Problems Of Life I have, I can't afford the time nor money to get CCNA of any kind.

Put a brick through a window and beat someone around the head with it, and I'll get free training?

Job jobbed - I'm off to beat someone to a pulp in the street!

Steven R

[Just for the record, I'm not being entirely serious - depending on the sorts of crimes the perps have been done for, I dare say putting them in a position where they could support themselves without needing to rob and burglarise etc is not a bad thing really]

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Pirate

Training

Since my current place of work seem a tad lax on keeping my training upto spec and often puts me in mind of what a term in jail could feel like, its tempting to turn to a short term life of crime to get better training and a new job to boot!

Hmm, may contact the BPI about all the pirated music I have accrued over the years.

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@AC Jailbird

Because it is easier to find a cure then teach prevention...

Plus it should give most ot the new inmates something to do for those extra days they are in the nick now, you know, the ones with the odd sounding names and engineering manuals... Or pretty much any student of proper degrees...

*whistles innocentley while mocking english and media graduates*

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Linux

Pros and Cons

Lets weigh these options.

Obey the law and you will get screwed by the gov't, the police, the sytem, Inland Revenue. You get to pay unfair amount of taxes, cannot get a house due to extreme costs, go to University to rack up debt you will have not chance of being able to pay back. Then when you get old everyone will turn thier back on you and let you rot in some rat infested stink hole.

Break the law, become a carreer criminal and all the upper middle class people who feel guitly because of the way they have raped and pillaged the land will come to your aid and give you money hand over fist.

Then people wonder why I believe the only good honest politician is 6 foot under or in a lttle jar.

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Anonymous Coward

@ Jail birds

"This is something I don't understand. This training could be given to many other people, who haven't forefitted their right to society, but instead, its the ones who choose crime and then get a career path."

ERM... just because you break a law and go to clink doesnt mean your forfeit your rights to society - you may be temporarily restricted in terms that you cannot vote/earn etc. have a look how many bullshit laws you can get locked up for... (smoking/selling weed for instance!)

im an ex-con and im doing very well nicely thank you... paying heaps in tax to help back society...

of course the people will be hand picked by screws as to who they think might be appropriate. the cross section of offenders in jail is massive! i dont think cleptos will be picked :)

now, i do think this was an odd decision tho, especially when i know people who were removed from part-time IT quals by the local authorities as they deemed it wasnt anywhere near as useful as forcing them to go on noddy ECDL style courses (mate of mine doing his GNVQ Adv in IT was forced to leave [in 2nd year!!!] by the dole as they seemed to think that the clait style course they were pushing would be more appropriate)

now, as someone who spent a year in hmp liverpool (lovely place!) i know there is no such thing as rehabilitation in clink. so actually helping with quals rather than just locking up smackheads seems a much better idea.

maybe we should be training them to build nuclear power stations might be more useful :) or to do the jobs all these polish guys seem to need to be imported to do!

ac for obvious reasons :) my boss still doesnt know :)

mines the one with little arrows on and aa bag makred 'swag' :)

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@ Anon

Err... i think they do offer training schemes. It is called young apprenticeships

And rightly so we should offer these people a way out of crime. The leading cause of crime in this and every other country is poverty. If we can offer these people a way of earning money by training them in a much-needed skill then we should.

If you believe that this is rewarding crime then perhaps we should stick to the current routine of locking people up, letting them out with no education and no hope of finding a job.

Do you honestly believe that people will commit crime in order to get onto a cabling course!?.

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Anonymous Coward

What offence'll get enough 'bird' to complete the 70 hours?

Given that most offences now get probation, warnings and (if you're a young hooligan) a holiday with your social worker, I guess it's got to be something serious.

Imagine the scene:

Parole Board: You're up for early release, because the PM and HomeSec don't have enough space for you.

Lag (turning violent): I'm not leaving until I've got my Cisco accreditation.

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Eh?

There are so many people out there that know a lot on this topic but can't get a job because they don't have the experience - very similar to any other IT job. Students complain they cant find work and companies complain they cant find the staff. the solution is not to train prisoners..........

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Good idea but...

...from this government who knows who will get the training.

I don't want to right them off a chance to do something decent but its the government/prison service I don't trust.

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Anonymous Coward

Pretty binding agreements..

There's a lot of people you can tie up with tie(haha) wraps and cat-5 cable..

Why do we pay goofballs who come up with such ideas?

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HMP Wandsworth???

Really, a shockingly bad choice. Wandsworth is hardcore, mostly lags who aren't going back on the straight and narrow, exceptions like Erwin James aside.

It's not high security like Belmarsh, but it is still for your Norman Stanley Fletchers of the this world.

HM Borstal might be a better target, or somewhere like YOI Feltham and its ilk, where there might be a chance of a turnaround.

(BTW, if my name-sake who got a year in Feltham for trying to rob my phone a few years ago is reading this, I really hope you stopped being a twat and sorted your life out)

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I would take the training

If I didn't have to go to jail I would take the training. But they'd want to charge me two grand for it on the outside so forget it.

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Re: careful profiling.

It also usually has a certain amount of being left to get on with the job at night and over weekends in areas stuffed full of expensive and easily resaleable objects.

Even those determined to go straight may have a few moments of temptation here.

The flipside of this one is that when that tenner you left on your desk drawer goes missing, it's always the onsite cabling contractors or the cleaning staff that get the blame. The fact that you picked it up two nights earlier, went out, got hosed and forgot about it doesn't enter into consideration.

Anyone doing this sort of thing with a criminal record is going to be an accusation magnet whether they nick anything or not.

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Go

re: Jailbirds

There are lots of places offering this kind of course. If teenagers want to do something like this the money is already available. The problem is that lots of them would rather sit around waiting for their break on big brother.

Most of the 'jailbirds' in prison are under 30, and likely to go on benefits for a long time (and therefore more likely to be tempted to commit crime and end up back in Prison). Giving training in areas where there is a shortage of staff

(a) Helps provide the staff we need

(b) Gives them a better chance of a job as there's less competion for the position.

(c) Reduce the chance of us forking out 40K a year for another spell inside.

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Unhappy

Not a good idea

About the only place I can see such (ex?-)criminals being at all employable is installing the initial "flood-wire" network cabling in new buildings. That's a modern versoin of training them as bricklayers or electricians. Even so, they get a good look at the floor plans (and maybe the alarm systems) while they work.

It's far worse if they are used as contractors in any working IT environment. They then may have physical access to hardware, and almost certainly can see exactly what hardware is in use. They could install bugging devices or firewall bypasses under the floors.

Sorry to say this, but ex-cons and security-critical infrastructure should be kept apart.

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Coat

Free Training?

Since I cannot afford the training on my own, I just have to go to jail?

What other courses are they offering? Do the offered courses get better with the level of offense?

I am in!

Mine is the one with the pistol!!

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Well trained

The last thing anyone wants on their Internet is more lag

Not sure why we're retraining your basic breaking and entering types into high tec criminals, seems a bit unfair to me that if you get caught stealing someones PC they send you on a free Cisco certified training course.

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Flame

Keyloggers galore

With all the access granted to the server rooms etc. how soon do you think these key loggers and other sophisticated data capture devices making appearance in banks' data centres?

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I'm all in favour of lags getting training!

I think it's great BUT....

They forfeited their rights, so by rights they should be offered standard basic life skills, enough to get basic work and give the high-level skills training, like cabling, brick-laying and all manner of skilled work, to those who have earned the right by behaving themselves!

I love living in the UK, one of the few places other than some corrupt banana republic, where you behave a like a complete git and get no end of freebies!

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Disgusting

All criminals should be locked up forever. What sort of a society thinks it can rehabilitate their prisoners? One crime and youre gone. It appalls me to think that should I have the misfortune to be locked up, that one day i might have the chance to feel that in some way I could make up for what I did.

When did Sun editors start commenting on the Reg?

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@ BlueR@nger

Screaming Lord Sutch is dead. Not, I suppose, that this means he still couldn't do a better job than the current bunch.

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IT Angle

Depends what you want.

The fundamental divide here is between those who feel that prison should be a punishment and those who feel that it should be an opportunity for rehabilitation. There is no cross over with these two arguments.

If it's punishment you're after then by all means lock them up throw away their key for an indeterminate period, remove anything but the basic stuffs required so that the inmate doesn't die then sit back in your chair and say 'That'll learn 'em'.

If you think the idea of removing someone from society and having them be a better person when they return seems like a good thing to you then giving offenders an opportunity to see that there's more to life than drugs and violence will probably seem like the way to go.

You can't have it both ways.

You're not going to get a 100 bright and shiny IT bods each year coming from these courses. What you might do is show some of them that there is another world out there. IMO, even if you only got 2 a year that went on to lead law abiding lives I'm guessing that the money you'd save dealing with the crimes they would've committed would more than make up for the cost of the courses. Doesn't that possiblity alone make it worth it?

If you think not you're obviously not thinking about society as a whole, which, whilst perfectly understandable, is a bit sad and depressing.

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Anonymous Coward

@Anonymous Criminal

Er excuse my ignorance but isn't it an offence to not declare your record, or is it just your immediate boss who doesn't know?

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Joke

Good Plan

If they are any good, they will get so much cash-in-hand work that they won't have time to reoffend.

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Opportunities

I think this is great. Do they have courses in tunneling? As i am thinking of going into mining when i get out. jonny 678567

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Re: Jailbirds.

Before I went to Uni, I struggled to find any sort of job in the Industry, ended up in Computer retail, which is rubbish. I quickly changed my mind and took up further education. I have worked in completely rubbish jobs part time ] to try and afford it, my debt pile is looking close towards 15grand and I still have another year to go.

In comparison, I could have stolen a car, gone to Prison, got trained and then leave. It'd be a load cheaper (for me) than having to pay my tuition fees, student accommodation, food, textbooks (at almost £40 a pop, x 4 for each semester) etc.

No wonder I am slightly pissed off! Penalise those that take the honest approach.

Criminals are criminals. Ex or not. They still did someone to the detriment of society, and it really really pisses me off when they get an easy option (well apart from the buggery in the showers, but we know they all like that really).

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Dave Ashton hits nail on head

This is a good system, providing a possible employment route when they get out of click. Just because you've been in prison doesn't mean you committed a crime of dishonesty. Negligence is enough for many crimes, and it's very easy to end up inside having defended yourself/your wife too vigorously in the eyes of the law from a burglar. I don't think we should say that if you hit a burglar in your house you should never get a job again (unless you have a subscription to the Daily Mail of course)

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Anonymous Coward

@AC et al 'Re: Jailbirds'

Are you so stupid that you seriously think that there'll be 100 lags walking out of prison and straight into IT jobs?

If they're any good they'll get hired, just like anyone else. Although they will have the added bonus of having to convince potential employers for the next ten years (depending on their offence) that their record doesn't necessarily mean that they won't be a good employee.

Take it from someone who knows. No matter how bright you are, or how actually good at something you are, with a criminal record on display you're always going to be ten steps behind in the employability stakes.

Luckily, I was always 11 steps better than everyone else.

;-)

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Easy option

Honestly? Easy option. Look, AC who worked in Retail, I'm fairly sure that society also divides people not only who those who think criminals should be either locked up forever or rehabilitated, but also those who have done time or not. Do you really want to have a prison record? I think your job prospects would actually decline a little. I think prisons should try to rehabilitate sure, i think everyone deserves a chance every now and then, but dont get pissed off at people cos they're in prison and youre not. Direct your energies into bettering your life outside. As you say, crimnals are criminals - youre not a criminal and you probably dont want that tag.

The buggery in the showers probably isnt all its cracked up to be.

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@Secretgeek

I can't really disagree with much you're saying there to be honest.

Most people, given a chance to sort their lives out, will take it, if they're given to understand that there is another way of life than being a bloody toerag.

Getting them early enough is the problem.

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Coat

hmmmm part 2

ive got to laugh at some of these comments. especially the ones about bricklaying. do you guys realise that a decent brickie earns shit-loads of cash? they can earn well over a grand a week!

and dont flatter yourself that cons are a) stupid and b) dishonest

im an ex con (mentioned in earlier post) and i run an IT department, with a background in design and development too :) i was imprisoned due to a drug offence. therefore i was technically a political prisoner (how many other 'crimes' have no victim??).

you guys also seem to think that data cabling requires all kinds of amazing brain skills. its frikkin laying a cable! oooh its so hard to crimp some ethernet cable and attach it to a switch isnt it... lol

and dont for a second think any of you typical IT types can hack prison for a second. stick to watching star trek and dreaming you are hard because you can kill people at halo :) prison is a dark place. the lack of sex for that period is hard enough... although IT people gerenally dont get much do they :)

@ Dave Ashton - brilliant mate - i didnt realise how many daily mail readers we have :) most people deserve a second chance (apart from murder, sex crimes etc)

rehabilitation is desperately needed in UK jails. ok, so ive been out about 10 years now, but when i was incarcerated there was no rehabilitation. just locked up for 23 hours a day, no leccy, no TVs (thanks daily mail for spreading the bullshit!) few books and nothing to do apart from learn how to rob cars and better ways to burgle etc.

all you will really get from this training is a few low level data cablers, who will most likely work as part of a crew and will prbbaly be doing more labouring

@ "Er excuse my ignorance but isn't it an offence to not declare your record, or is it just your immediate boss who doesn't know?" after 10 years i dont have to say anything. but, to be honest, why would you say anything? you will get ruled out of a job straight away, no matter how good you are... whats the worst they can do? sack me? hehe

@ "Before I went to Uni, I struggled to find any sort of job in the Industry, ended up in Computer retail, which is rubbish. I quickly changed my mind and took up further education. I have worked in completely rubbish jobs part time ] to try and afford it, my debt pile is looking close towards 15grand and I still have another year to go." & "Criminals are criminals. Ex or not. They still did someone to the detriment of society, and it really really pisses me off when they get an easy option (well apart from the buggery in the showers, but we know they all like that really)."

- hmmmm dont blame us all mate that you are too stupid after all this time to get a decent job in IT. its not rocket science is it! as said before mate, whining little runts like you would be crying themselves to sleep nightly in big boys prison, it certainly isnt an easy option. everyone knows IT degrees are a waste of time. also: "They still did someone to the detriment of society," maybe if you could even grasp the basics of the english language you might get a decent job. i never 'did' anyone, and im not alone in that respect.

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Fecking Rediculous!

I've recently become Cisco CCNA certified, and because i'm young, and have only bewen working in IT for 2 years repairing and maintaining networks and PCs, I'm not even been considered for jobs. Out of the 15 or so jobs i've applied for over the last month I havent had ONE interview. There is no problem with a skills shortage, companies just wont give the people who apply for positions a fair chance!

Training prisoners to do the jobs that i'm sure hundreds of people in the UK can do and are qualified to do but who cant get jobs, is NOT going to fix anything

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Anonymous Coward

@AC 'hmmmm...'

Please AC stop waving your 'I've been to prison and am so hard and you're such a pussy who wouldn't last two minutes' knob around. It's not big and it's certainly not clever. Reverse snobbery is just as unhelpful as Daily Mail style ignorance and paranoia. In fact if anything it can be more damaging because it's from someone who should know better.

As an ex-resident of 'The House On The Hill' I can agree with you that a lot of the comments being made are from those with a distorted or unrealistic view but don't attack ignorance with arrogance.

Try subtle piss taking instead. It's even funnier when you know they'll take a while to figure it out. Poor retail boy.

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IT Angle

Why not

retrain all those out of work IT consultants to do something constructive rather than act like criminals themselves (charge sh!tloads for regurgitating what the staff told them in the first place).

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Coat

hmmmm x3

@ Thom Lanigan

"As for your comment on victimless crime, there is no such thing. You're a drug abuser, and the people who you paid are profiting from doing something which is harming society. There are victims. The people who grew and cut the crop you consumed have to deal with horrible conditions to afford food, as a for instance. they probably also have to deal with gun toting hard-as-nails ex-military people harassing them all the time too, and then there's the dealers who are probably commiting other crimes as well. So don't talk about victimless crime. There's no such thing."

just want to clear some things up here...

"The people who grew and cut the crop you consumed have to deal with horrible conditions to afford food, as a for instance" - nope! almost 100% of UK weed is grown by people in the UK. they dont live in squaller - thats just the odd 1 or 2 'factories' that have been found. this is just reported heavily in the mail <sigh lol>. the majority of weed is grown by people themselves, some sell surplus to mates and buy back from other mates in the same manor. and as for no such thing as a victimless crime... what if i buy some weed seeds (legal in uk as mr brown likes his tax), i grow seeds into a plant. i am then nicked by NU LABOUR and sent to jail. who is the victim there? i know what you are saying as ive met many nasty people in the trade, but not everyone is a 'pusher' :) im just playing devils advocate here :)

anwyay - i got nicked for selling Es to my Uni mates lol..

@2nd AC... im not waving my big nob around lol... im just commenting on the may posts about where all cons are bad people and should be left to rot/ prison is a piece of piss style pokes. i just wanted to enlighten some people as to what its really like. apologies if i get het up but im sick of these assumptions from people who know little of what they preach. like this member ofn the einstein family:

"Criminals are criminals. Ex or not. They still did someone to the detriment of society, and it really really pisses me off when they get an easy option (well apart from the buggery in the showers, but we know they all like that really)."

<rant over> :)

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Hmmm

"Criminals are criminals. Ex or not. They still did someone to the detriment of society, and it really really pisses me off when they get an easy option"

I'm a convicted criminal. I told a traffic warden to fuck off once. Public Order Offences Act. Photos, fingerprints, DNA, 5 hours in the cells and a £150 fine. And, of course, a criminal record that will never be deleted.

The catchall term criminal can range from people who the Govt disapprove of; through people like me who are not at their most charming on the morning school run before the first coffee of the day; up to full-bore psychopaths. You probably break 50 laws a day yourself. A bit of thought before you go all Daily Mail with terms you obviously dont understand, if you please. Thank you. Same for the rest of you.

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