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back to article Facebook flashplodders lose appeal against 4-yr jail stint

Appeals brought by two young men nabbed for inciting violent disorder via Facebook during the England riots in August have been dismissed. The Court of Appeal threw out the sentence disputes this morning. Jordan Blackshaw, 20, of Vale Road in Marston near Northwich, was sentenced to four years in jail after appearing before a …

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Coat

As the illiterari might put it

PMSL LOL

Mine's the one with the nicked iPhone in it, innit.

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Anonymous Coward

"Lord Chief Justice, Lord Judge, who was sitting with Sir John Thomas"

With such names reminiscent of a faked-up Victorian-era petition, I guess it fits in nicely with a replay of the "Victorian values" farce for those of you old enough to remember. "The accused did look at me in a foul manner using his Facebook and so I sentence him to transportation to the colonies!"

If the public prosecutor bothered to actually convict and sentence the richest pilferers in society instead of these clowns, the taxpayer wouldn't have to take a pure loss on entertaining them for the duration of their sentence: just keeping the high-end thieves from the financial industry and politics from having their head in the trough would easily pay for their time at HMQ's pleasure.

But no, why do that when one can make some ill-conceived conservative fantasy a reality *and* have someone else pay for it all?

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Anonymous Coward

Also, if you think keeping these guys in prison will be expensive

You just wait and see how much they cost society when they've graduated after four years in the University of Crime.

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Your dont get it

They tried to incite a riot. The fact that they were unable to has nothing to do with it.

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Proportionate?

A custodial sentence was probably warranted, but I can't help but wonder if it's a proportionate response, when they're getting harsher sentences than people who actually did do some rioting.

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Meh

Maybe it comes down to the maths...

Hmmm...

One rioter breaks one window and steals one telly.

These scrotes incite a riot and cause a thousand rioters to take to the streets, each breaking one window and stealing one telly.

So that's (counts fingers in an exaggerated fashion for effect) a thousand broken windows and a thousand nicked tellies. *

Their sentence doesn't seem so disproportionate to me.

* OK, so not all thousand rioters are going to break a window and nick a telly, but the net damage as a result of one riot-inciter versus one rioter is clear. To me, at any rate.

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FAIL

@These scrotes incite a riot

To paraphrase an old quote: "What if they gave a riot but nobody came?"

Not long after the recent riots, just down the road from me a party got out of hand with over 100 people turning up after word got out via Twatter etc.

The Police managed to herd them out of the side roads and contain them, but some drunken idiots "for a laugh" apparently started chanting "we're going to riot".

There was no riot, very little damage was caused, but should those idiots also get four year sentences?

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@Graham Marsden

If the 'idiots' you mention above were to get four year sentences they would think twice before doing it again. Having inadvertently had a Face book inspired party held in my house I have absolutely no sympathy for this sort of behavior.

The large sentences handed out to these and other scrotes caught during the summer riots are to discourage a repeat performance. This seems entirely sensible.

Personally I have no wish to live in a society where anybody who is 'tougher' (or at least thinks they are), has more face book mates, or can form a mob better via social media, then feels justified in breaking into my property and thieving.

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@Titus Technophobe

How do you "inadvertently" have "a Face book inspire party" held in your house?

I suggest you might look at de-friending a few idiots rather than demanding they get four year jail sentences!

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@Graham

The process for "inadvertently" having "a Face book inspire party" is to -

a. go on holiday

b. your child enters house and invites 2 or 3 friends round

c. your child's 'mates' then invite hordes of other face book 'scrotes' to the empty house

...... you may have seen details of this sort of thing if you read the news paper (then again I'm not sure newspapers make it to the ivory tower in which you live). The damage caused was probably close to a grand, and I would be more than happy to see the lot of them go down for 4 years.

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@Titus Technophobe

Ah, right, so you're talking about a parenting failure.

Still, nice to see that, rather than learning from such mistakes (or, even better, teaching children a bit of common sense so they don't happen in the first place ) you're in favour of locking them up for four years instead.

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@Graham

Interesting that you should mention that one, yes I like many parents admit to being overly indulgent of my children in their earlier life. That aside the children that caused the damage, and who robbed my house weren’t mine.

As a consequence of parental failure by both me and others, we now have a generation of young people which includes a significant number who have an attitude of entitlement. They know all about their ‘rights’, but don’t understand the responsibilities that go with those ‘rights’.

I have mentioned previously in these very forums about confronting a ‘mob’ in front of my house, and all the shouting about the HRA. I believe that it is the attitude of this significant minority who are responsible for the lawlessness during summer.

So yes, if it addresses these attitudes, I am in favour of locking them up for four years, as you might say ‘pour encourager les autres’. As I have mentioned the same thoughts would apply to the two idiots that attempted to incite a riot. In fact I would consider their attempts to encourage others to lawlessness rather more seriously than the participation in the riots.

I would be interested to see what your attitude would be if say the police hadn’t appeared and the mob you describe above had decided to descend on your house?

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@Titus Technophobe

I have to second Graham's point, the maladjusted parent leads to dysfunctional children. It is disgraceful that you could even think of locking these kids up.

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@Titus Technophobe

Your whole post boils down to one single point: "if it addresses these attitudes [...] ‘pour encourager les autres’"

If you're not aware, the origin of that comment was in Voltaire's Candide and was in reference to the execution of Admiral John Byng for failing to relieve the beseiged British Garrison at Minorca

Byng was effectively made a scape-goat for the British Government and Admiralty's failure to do *their* job properly by a) not acting in time to deal with the expected French attack on Minorca and b) sending Byng out with ships that were undermanned and in a poor state of repair.

So you're looking to do pretty much the same, find a scapegoat to blame for *your* failures and if that requires locking them up for four years, well, that's not your problem, is it?

The fact that "make an example of them" sentences have been shown throughout history to be abject failures in dealing with the root causes of problems seems to be of no concern to you either.

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@Graham

OK, so you reply would be an 'ad hominem' response then?

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@Titus Technophobe

Ah, now you're trying to use me as a scapegoat for your failure to understand what an ad hominem argument is.

Feel free to have the last word, I've wasted enough time on this.

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n 5

?

"cause"

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gotta love the UK....

say riot and get 4 years. steal some trainers, 4 years.

be corrupt, let your best mate in on secret gov. talks. take backhanders..... and you dont even get the sack!

no wonder the youth feel disaffected and so let down by authority. the watchmen are running riot and we cant do anything about it.

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WTF?

So let's get this straight...

"No rioting took place as a result of either Blackshaw's or Sutcliffe-Keenan's foolish posts on Facebook.

Despite that, their appeals were rejected today, which means their sentences, four years apiece in the slammer, will be served."

So what are we saying? That it's illegal to be a complete spanner now is it? They didn't actually incite anyone to do anything illegal, but they get jail time as if they did.

Now if only politicians were subject to the same logic!!!!

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Weeell

I suppose they can still be guilty of incitement, even if no-one was actually incited.

As I said above, a custodial sentence was probably warranted, pour encourager les autres, but I would have thought it would be more productive to have a lower custodial element, and then some community service too.

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Anonymous Coward

It is a crime to incite a riot. That they didn't have enough friends for the riot doesn't mean that they are innocent of incitement, just that they are bad at it. :-)

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Correction

Actually, they did incite; they just weren't very successful at it. Should punishment only be meted out to those criminals whose efforts bear fruit*?

I agree with other posters that 4 years is disproportionate, but these guys are not complete innocents, either.

* Metaphorically speaking of course -- else we'd be considering a very different criminal code: "sowing with intent to reap", etc.

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n 5

?

a thought crime relating to a potential crime then?

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Big Brother

U got the look

Why do the men in these photographs always look guilty? I never think 'there's and innocent face if I ever saw one.'

Perhaps we could cut down on crime by photographing everyone in the country and then locking away the guilty looking ones?

What do you mean I look guilty? Oh yes, so I do. And so do you.

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Anonymous Coward

4 years?

Isn't that the same as the average sentence for rape?

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Anonymous Coward

actually you get less for rape...

and even less for sexual assault, even on kids.

sickening isnt it!

i only know as ive spend some time behind bars when younger and was amazed at some of the low sentences given for sex offenders.

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Anonymous Coward

Where's Steven Fry now

I remember assorted luvvies giving their full support when someone joked about bombing on twitter.

Not so noisy now.

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Yeah, that was entirely different.

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Big Brother

Of course you get less for rape....

The full force of the law is reserved for those who challenge the supremacy of the State. They do the other stuff just to maintain their readiness.

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Anonymous Coward

It occurs to me...

... that the suits who turn up in limousines for G8 / G20 conferences seem to be the common factor in riots all over the world.

Does this not count as incitation?

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T J
Big Brother

Facebook is not safe, use only with caveats

If you use your real details on Suckerbook you get what you ask for. And as a citizen of the UK Descent Into The Orwellian Nightmare you should really know better!

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Anonymous Coward

Back to the 90's

The 1790's that is.

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Silver badge

So...

...the get 4 years. OK. Rioting and public disorder are bad.

So are ABH, GBH and abuse of a public office.

I would go as far to say that, depending on the public office, the abuse of it is as bad as rioting or public disorder.

When then are we not seeing MPs serving 4 year terms for expenses fraud? All they get is a quick slap on the wrist and made to promise not to get caught again...err...not to repeat.

One rule for them, another rule for us.

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Inciting a riot is indeed a serious offence. Those who phoned their mates to come and join in the ongoing riots in London deserve everything they get. The incitement is crystal clear.

But there is an important distinction between unsuccessfully inciting a riot, and never having the slightest intention of inciting a riot.

Facebook *can* be like knocking on peoples' doors trying to persuade them to start a riot. But it can also be like running down the street shouting "let's riot" through every letterbox - a joke, no intention to actually start a riot, and no chance of ever starting a riot.

The court needs to decide which of these it was. I am not convinced a court understands Facebook well enough to do that fairly. "Modern technology" was used in the actual riots, so jail 'em seems to be the attitude.

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> like running down the street shouting lets riot

Or like shouting "fire" in a crowded theatre for a joke?

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n 5

?

why crowd a theatre?

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