I wonder could Tony Blair...........
be charged with the same thing. After all he did say that Saddam was going to kill us all in 45 mins.
funny how he can say opps sorry its all a mistake where as little people get nailed to the wall for it.
A UK man accused of posting a Twitter update that was taken as a threat to blow Doncaster airport "sky high" is to face trial, and has changed his plea to not guilty. Paul Chambers, 26, allegedly posted the contentious update on 6 January, after a run of bad weather forced the Yorkshire airport to close a week before he was …
You see, that's what happens when you get your "news" from the Daily Mail/Sunday Sport. I believe the report (note - NOT authored by Blair, just prefaced) stated Saddam had weapons of Mass Destruction that could be deployed within 45mins. However, there was never any suggestion they were mounted on ICBM's that might reach Blighty. The threat was to the middle east - not the UK.
So, other than the source AND the story, your "facts" were spot on. Point well made.
".... existing and active military plans for the use of chemical and biological weapons, which could be activated within 45 minutes....."
"....Iraq's development of weapons with a range of more than 1,000 km...."
"Because there is no way this man, in this region above all regions, could begin a conflict using such weapons and the consequences not engulf the whole world, including this country."
Tony Blair - Reference House of Commons debates, 24 September 2002, 11:30 am.
What he also said was "....Afghanistan is a country now freed from the Taliban....". Funny that!
You see, that's what happens when comentards have a sense of humour failure. I believe the OP was not basing his comments on fact but a common meme which is used by the mainstream media not just the Daily Fail and the Sunday Sport. Give the guy (or guyess) a break, I'm sure he was joking or being satirical.
So, other than humour AND common sense, your "comment" was spot on. Point well made. Not.
It appears (from the AP report at least) that he is now denying sending the message. I could understand him changing his plea to not guilty on the grounds that the tweet did not constitute a threatening message, but how can he expect to be taken seriously in denying something he had previously admitted?
If he's going for the old favourite "somebody hacked my twitter account to send a single message" plea, then it would only be credible had he not previously admitted to sending the message. Entering a plea of not guilty could well mean that the bench decide that he needs to be referred for a jury trial, so maybe it's some sort of delaying tactic.
Against heavy handed and to be quite frank, moronic policing.
I expect this important testcase will establish whether posting something on Tw?tter is considered "sending" under the terms of the charge concerned. And well done Doncaster Airport for the complete sense of humour failure.
Again only really if he hadn't previously admitted to sending the message, he could just be pleading not guilty to make the point that the prosecution has the burden of proving guilt. Does anyone have any idea whether it's a strict liability offence? I wouldn't be surprised if so, but if not then maybe he could also be making the point that nobody could reasonably interpret what he did as intending to be an actual threat?
Well, it depends really.
He might be able to say, that in hindsight he thinks he is not guilty of doing what he was accused off.
Example, Alice tweets: 'they set us up the bomb'. Now Bob thinks Alice is setting up a bomb. He asks Alice, did you tweet that message and Alice says 'yes'.
Now Alice is in jail, being questioned for the twentieth time today, and it strikes her that even though indeed she has tweeted that message, never did she mean she's gonna plant a bomb to blow stuff up.
I expect these things to be more about words than about anything else.
Apropos: the wind blows at the airfield, the planes fly sky-high... I'd say he just had to skip a few syllables to write a nifty little Koan. Then it's ye olde 'it was Art' defense.
But as a counter argument to the people saying it's a waste of police time and the case should be thrown out.
1) It's his choice to plead not guilty, prolonging the case and wasting court time and money, to an incident which he previously admitted to.
2) If you're one of the people who has their trip/holiday b*ggered up because of a need to investigate a suspicious parcel (idiot forgot luggage) or verify a suspected threat (idiot makes bomb related comment) - I suspect you may not be so charitable and forgiving.
3) It's easier to find a needle in a haystack, if you cut down on the idiots tipping more straw on top - and comments like this persons are adding to the pile.
I do think jail time is probably not the best sentence for him - esp if it's suspended (which negates the deterent in my opinion) - but a hefty fine would concentrate his mind wonderfully
He could do the right thing, admit he was an idiot, plead mercy and walk away from it with a valuable lesson for the future about the consequences of being a kn*b
...is "what constitutes public vs private communication?"
Certainly, my highly visited website about the Beijing Tea Market would be considered public if I posted a "threatening message" there, but what about my family genealogy website? It's equally open to the public, but is visited less, which could open up a slippery slope of determining at what traffic level a "private" website becomes "public".
How about facebook and twitter, where the user can control the visibility of what they write? Surely, if my privacy settings only allow my friends and family to see my comments, then that should be considered private communication, in my opinion, but I'll bet the government would disagree.
If the government can decide what is public vs private arbitrarily, then what's to stop them from deciding that your phone call to your friend down the street is no longer private? What's to stop them from saying that your pillow talk with your spouse is no longer private? Clearly, what I say to my wife in our bed is no business of the government, but at what point does their right to classify our communications as public or private stop?
I hope this case addresses some of these issues, though I'm sure that ultimately it will just result, as it always does, with the little guy bending over as we slowly erode our freedoms.
Of course, there's always that question of whether people that are going to blow up airports warn them first...but that's just crazy talk...
"1) It's his choice to plead not guilty, prolonging the case and wasting court time and money, to an incident which he previously admitted to."
So by pleading not guilty, you think he's deliberately wasting court time and money? It's possible he could be though it's more likely he was under pressure and did not have adequate legal advice at the time of his arrest. And now since then, has been advised to change his plea.
There's many reasons why he may of changed his plea, not all of them bogus. I think you should re-evaluate your idea that someone pleading not guilty means they only want to waste time.
What's he an idiot for? He didn't genuinely threaten anyone. By this I mean that the airport didn't treat it as a bomb threat.
If I say, and I'm bracing myself for the black helicopters as I do, that the whole police force need a damn good kick in the pants, it would be difficult to argue that I'm actually threatening to assault a police officer.
He made a 'joke' - hell, he made a comment to vent his frustration.
Legally it doesn't make a difference whether he sent it by email or twitter (the way the CPS wants to see things, as it's misuse of electronic communications or some such). So what if I said the same thing in a personal conversation using Skype? Illegal?
The whole thing is moronic, and yes, the police really do need a damn good kick in the pants.
Never underestimate the lengths that stupidity will go to to protect and defend its own stupidity.
The prosecution will try to nail this guy to the wall using every tactic, dirty and otherwise, so that they and the police don't look like total idiots. Which will of course confirm it but that won't help this guy much.
Kudos to this guy for not just rolling over, and good luck to him as well.
Brits, keep yourself anonymous, watch what you say, in case some asshole pretends it is a real threat, or fakes 'being scared'. The consequences of that are so serious you may never shake them off, you may appear on secret lists, have your private info examined and shared freely, or be locked up if you refuse to assist in the fishing expedition that follows, or have a dirty picture on your PC.
You are in the UK FFS, if it's one thing you've learned by now it's to avoid hypothetical conversations, jokes, idle threats, double entendre, anything that can be used against you.
HE IS NOT GUILTY, the charge against him is that he SENT THREATS. He did not SEND it and it was not a THREAT, it was clearly bluster, I won't even call it an 'idle threat', because a threat needs to be directed to be a threat. So he is not guilty in any sense, and the charges against him are clearly malicious.
Welcome to NuLabour, watch your words carefully.
He did "send it". The act of submitting the tweet and it's subsequent transmission means that it was sent via the communications medium in the eyes of the law. It doesn't even need to be received to be considered under the law which he is being charged with breaking. The threat, or more specifically "menacing" nature of the message is what is up for grabs.
Personally I'd let him off and have the judge sternly tell him not to be a twat in future but to consider that the police and CPS are trigger-happy incompetent pricks that seek out all low hanging fruit before posting/tweeting.
There was no harm.
Airport was not disrupted and the guy had no means of following through on his private threat.
And yes, it was private. People follow his innane tweets are, effectively, his friends. He did not contact the airport, he had no intent to cause alarm or disruption and none was caused.
Worsdt case scenario he may have wasted police time, or maybe the person who over-reacted to his tweet wasted police time.
Mind you, the more police time that is wasted the better. Otherwise they'll be out there stopping and searching in contravention of EU law, but the UK govt said they're allowed to act illegally, so that's ok. Which reminds me, must read up on the Nuremberg trials and see what the most common defence was....
Go to twitter, type "I'm going to kill" in to the search box and click search - be careful not to click post as you may well find yourself up for prosecution under the same act as this chap is being charged.
Now type in "I'm going to blow up"
Now type in "I'm going to bomb"
Now type in "I'm going to rape"
Now type in "I'm going to hurt"
Now type in "I'm going to punch"
Now type in "I'm going to steal"
How many of those people in the search results does the CPS intend to charge? It'd certainly help to meet government targets.
Hell, TheWileyOnes has stated on twitter, just 8 hours ago as I type this that: "In memory of Peter Graves: I'm going to steal a 747 to crash into that big glass window at LAX." - I'm scared, better get on to the authorities now ... it's just as credible.
I think perhaps we should get a little bit of perspective and put the common sense filter on for a moment.
Many people will wrongly admit guilt for doing something which they mistakenly believe is an offence but isn't when it comes down to it - this can be particularly so when the police will offer a seemingly innocuous caution to avoid prosecution.
It is for the prosecution to prove that what happened did happen, and that what happened is an offence as per the definition of such an offence. It is everyone's right to demand that.
I'm just glad that he seems to have received legal advice which he did not appear to have when he originally pleaded. The absence of mens rea will play an important part in this case, and even the prosecution seemed to admit there was none. If that's so, it seems the prosecution will either drop the case or waste everyone's time in court. I think he'd have to be extremely unlucky to get a judge and jury who couldn't see it for what it was; unwise maybe, but not an actual threat, a poor joke but not menacing.
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