A collection of snippets from mainstream media articles reporting on the cases involving individuals connected to the riots that happened in London and across the UK.
Two men have been handed four-year jail terms for setting up Facebook pages encouraging people to riot – even though the riots never took place.The sentences are some of the stiffest handed down so far by the courts since last week’s widespread disturbances and signal how determined the judiciary is to punish anyone caught using social media to spread looting or violence.
Jordan Blackshaw, 20, from Marston near Northwich, and Perry Sutcliffe-Keenan, 22, from Warrington, appeared at Chester Crown Court yesterday and both pleaded guilty to inciting violent disorder.
The court heard how Blackshaw was the only person who turned up to his own riot and was promptly arrested by police whilst Sutcliffe-Keenan’s riot page was only up for a few hours before he took it down again.
Blackshaw labelled his Facebook group “Smash dwn [sic] in Northwich Town” and called on his friends to meet behind McDonald’s in the town centre on Tuesday 9 August for “lootin”. The police had already infiltrated his group and, according to the prosecutor Martin McRobb, only nine of his 147 friends even bothered to reply to his call to arms.
And in Manchester, heavy sentencing report from the BBC news website – 16 August 2011:
David Beswick, 31, Stephen Carter, 26, both from Salford, and Michael Gillespie-Doyle, 18, from Tameside, all pleaded guilty at earlier hearings.The sentencing judge said their crimes deserved longer sentences than if they had been isolated cases.
“For those reasons I consider that the sentencing guidelines for specific offences are of much less weight in the context of the current case, and can properly be departed from.”
Beswick, of Anson Street, Eccles, who the court heard had been given a 37in television to put in his car, was jailed for 18 months for handling stolen goods.
Gillespie-Doyle, of Victoria Street, Openshaw, admitted burglary at Sainsbury’s in Deansgate in Manchester city centre and was sentenced to two years in a young offenders Institution.
Boyd was found with a bag full of cigarettes and alcohol, so heavy she could not carry itCarter, of James Street, Salford, was caught in King Street, Manchester, with a bag of clothes and shoes worth £500. He was sentenced to 16 months in jail for theft by finding.
Solidarity with people arrested in riots