Man appeals against Twitter terror fine
Saturday 25 September 2010
A trainee accountant who posted a message on Twitter threatening to blow an airport "sky high" began an appeal against his conviction and sentence yesterday, arguing that nobody would ever have taken his message seriously.
Paul Chambers, 26, was found guilty of sending a menacing electronic communication in May and was ordered to pay a £385 fine, a £15 victim surcharge and £600 costs. He later lost his job.
Chambers, from Doncaster, South Yorkshire, claimed he sent the tweet to his 600 "followers" in a moment of frustration after nearby Robin Hood Airport was closed by snow in January. The message read: "Crap! Robin Hood Airport is closed. You've got a week and a bit to get your shit together, otherwise I'm blowing the airport sky high!"
Yesterday at Doncaster Crown Court, his solicitor said that if the tweet was considered menacing within the meaning of the law, then so could so many other statements made in all manner of social situations. Stephen Ferguson said: "To misquote Betjeman, 'Come friendly bombs and drop on Slough'. The point is an obvious one."
The barrister said the tweet was nothing more than "facetious parody" and that the conviction should be quashed because the message could not be called "menacing". The case continues.
Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes
Israel-Gaza conflict: Death toll tops 125 after overnight raids as Operation Protective Edge continues
Game of Thrones author George RR Martin says 'f*** you' to fans who fear he will die before finishing Westeros saga
Ian Thorpe gay: Olympic swimmer comes out in Parkinson interview
Supermoon 2014: When and why will the moon look bigger and brighter this summer?
Gaza-Israel conflict: Pro-Palestinian demonstrators take to streets of London, Paris and New York in wave of protests
Sustained immigration has not harmed Britons' employment, say government advisers
War is war: Why I stand with Israel
7/7 memorial defaced on anniversary of 2005 attacks with ‘Blair lied thousands died’ graffiti
Australia facing international condemnation after turning around Sri Lankans at sea
Even when it brutalises one of its own teenage citizens, America is helpless against Israel
Socialist Worker called to apologise over ‘vile’ article saying Eton schoolboy Horatio Chapple's death is ‘reason to save the polar bears’
- 1 Why I'm on the brink of burning my Israeli passport
- 2 Japanese plant experts produce 10,000 lettuce heads a day in LED-lit indoor farm
- 3 War is war: Why I stand with Israel
- 4 L'Oreal cuts ties with Belgium supporter Axelle Despiegelaere after hunting trip photographs
- 5 The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week