Criminal damage is fine if the victims are linked to Israel

By Stephen Pollard
July 2, 2010

Melanie Phillips is rightly outraged by the grotesque decision of a Hove jury to acquit seven activists who caused £180,000 damage to an arms factory. The reason: because they were anti-Israel protesters.

As she points out, it's the judge's direction which is deeply worrying:

Judge George Bathurst-Norman suggested to the jury that
‘you may well think that hell on earth would not be an understatement
of what the Gazans suffered in that time’.

Let’s get our heads round this, folks: an English judge in an
English court of law effectively directed a jury to acquit people of
criminally smashing up a factory, because he chose to believe Hamas
propaganda about the suffering of people in Gaza during a war about
which he presumably has no knowledge whatever apart from what he has
read or seen in the media – a war, moreover, launched solely to prevent
Gazans from aggressively firing rockets into Israel in order to murder
its civilians, during the course of which war Israel went to heroic
lengths to avoid hurting Gazan civilians who were being put in harm’s
way by Hamas, the true cause of Gaza's 'hell on earth'.

Quite apart from the ignorance and bigotry of Judge George
Bathurst-Norman, what on earth is a judge doing imposing his political
prejudices upon a jury and thus taking the side of the defendants in
the case he is trying – with the result that he effectively directed
the jury to acquit them of a crime?



Blacklisted Dictator

Fri, 07/02/2010 - 22:55

Rate this:

0 points


You concur with Melanie here.

However, I very much doubt whether she would agree with your analysis regarding the reasons for not banning the burqua. As a result, I hope that you find the time to discuss it with her, since she might be able to explain, much better than I did, precisely where you went wrong.


Sat, 07/03/2010 - 21:50

Rate this:

0 points

Rate This
I believe there is something more sinister at foot here. These protestors have been targetting this factory for some time.
See for example;
Obviously believing that to claim that they were trying to destroy the factory to prevent arms being sent to British troops in Iraq and Afghanistan would not be approved by an English Jury it would appear that they therefore cooked up a story that they were trying to get arms stopped to Israel. I would be interested to know if their previous attempts to target the EDO factory before Caste Lead were brought to the jury’s attention in the case.
Their actions would have had no effect on Israel’s justifiable and legal efforts by force of arms to prevent the terrorist entity in Gaza from firing rockets into Israeli cities. As such they have succeeded in carrying out criminal damage to EDO which has been their aim all along without fear of punishment and in the process have used Israel as a scapegoat.
Questions have to be asked. Who was responsible for appointing a judge who obviously should have recused himself given the prejudicial nature of the terms OF his direction to the jury? What connection does that person have with the defendants and/or with pro-Palestinian/anti-Israel organisations? What we have here is a classic anti-Semitic plot.

Ben Abuyah

Sun, 07/04/2010 - 18:26

Rate this:

0 points

Has anyone got a transcript of the whole of the judge's summing up?

"You may well think that hell on earth would not be an understatement of what the Gazans suffered in that time, and you may well therefore conclude that the actions of the defendants were justified, on the grounds that they were attempting to prevent what they considered to be a greater crime."

would be very different from

"You may well think that hell on earth would not be an understatement of what the Gazans suffered in that time; however, you may not take that into account in reaching your decision; you must simply decide whether or not the defendants were breaking the law."


You must be logged in to post a comment.