BRITAIN’S festival of righteous indignation has finally resulted in someone being jailed because of tube socks.
Courts in riot-hit cities have been told to disregard the ‘sentencing rule book’ – or as some experts have called it, ‘the law’ – and imagine they are administering justice in the mid-14th Century.
Sentencing 12 year-old Stephen Malley, Croydon magistrate Martin Bishop, said: “These are fine, decent young socks which you have no doubt defiled. Indeed, one dare not insert one’s fingers for fear of what may lurk at the toe-end.
“In a perfect world I would be allowed to kill you right now with my bare hands, but it is not a perfect world and so the best I can do is sentence you to eight years in a medium-sized dog cage.
“You will also have your favourite pair of socks confiscated and given to your most hated enemy so that you may experience the same sense of loss and trauma as the institutional shareholders of JD Sports.”
As Malley broke down screaming ‘it’s just a pair of socks, it’s just a pair of socks’, Bishop told him: “You should have known the consequences when you accepted these innocent socks as an evil gift.
“The fact that you are probably the first and last person to get eight years for stolen tube sock possession is easily the most irrelevant thing I have ever heard.”
But lawyer Tom Logan said: “Is a career criminal’s carefully planned burglary really that different from opportunist sock handling? It’s a complex issue, isn’t it?
“But I suspect the new sentencing policy is not so much about differentiating between crimes as it is about sending a signal to poor people that they are no longer welcome. Something I am sure they will understand.
“Hopefully some of them will get their lives back on track and perhaps even become Members of Parliament who will steal £9000 from the taxpayer and get 14 minutes in an open prison that’s probably nicer than some of the hotels they lied about staying in.”