Moral Low Ground


British Engineering Student Nicolas Robinson Sentenced to Six Months Jail for Stealing £3.50 Bottled Water During London Riot

A 23-year-old British student has been sentenced to six months in jail for stealing a case of bottled water during the recent London riots.

According to The Telegraph, Nicolas Robinson, who is studying electrical  engineering in college, was on his way home from his girlfriend’s home around 2:40 on Monday morning when he passed a Lidl supermarket in Brixton that was in the process of being looted. Robinson then entered the store and stole a case of bottled water worth £3.50 ($5.67). He threw down the water and fled when confronted by police; they caught and arrested him and he confessed to stealing the water.

Robinson, who has no prior criminal record, appeared in Camberwell Magistrate’s Court where his solicitor explained that her client “got caught up in the moment” and was “incredibly ashamed” of his actions.

Prosecutor Zahid Hussain countered by referring to “those who reside in London, and far afield [who] have noticed and witnessed during the past week the sight of riots, public disorder and looting,” adding that “the prosecution submit that this defendant has contributed through his actions and criminal conduct to the atmosphere of both chaos and sheer lawlessness.”

District Judge Alan Baldwin was not inclined to go lightly on the student, despite his good character, his early guilty plea, his remorse and the low value of burgled merchandise.  “The burglary of commercial premises in circumstances such as this where substantial and wholesale public disorder has taken place is in effect what is commonly called looting,” he said. “The aggravating features are the background of serious public disorder and your part in that,” he added, explaining the harsh sentence to the defendant.

According to The Telegraph, Robinson’s family “gasped with disbelief” in the public gallery when Judge Baldwin handed down the six-month sentence.


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  1. Common SenseAugust 18, 2011 at 11:09 pmReply

    He didn’t get 6 months for stealing water worth £3.50 he got 6 months for looting

    • Brett WilkinsAugust 19, 2011 at 7:42 amReplyAuthor

      And what about the London banksters who loot the world for a living? Which crime is more serious? And why aren’t they in prison?

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