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UK Courts Sit Overnight To Try Riot Accused

PTI 11 Aug 2011, 8:32:06 IST

London, Aug 11 : As courts in London, Manchester and Birmingham work throughout the night to deal with hundreds of people arrested, the first two criminals convicted for the looting and violence sweeping England were jailed today.

No one has been granted bail so far, reflecting Prime Minister David Cameron's commitment to bring the full force of law on rioters who have blighted his government's image inside and outside Britain.

The Greater Manchester Police (GMP) today said two men were today imprisoned for public order offences.

“Two people already jailed for their part in last night's disorder—swift justice. Two men sentenced to 10 weeks and 16 weeks. First of many. Extra courts sitting tonight to deal with prisoners.  GMP will update with all the sentences as soon as they are given,” the police said.

In London, four magistrates courts were sitting to process hundreds of people charged in connection with the riots in the capital.

Some arrested teenagers broke down in court when they were confronted with evidence of their illegal activities.

Reflecting the seriousness with which these offences were being treated, a large number of such cases were being committed to the Crown Court.

While the magistrates can impose a jail term of only six months, a sentence by the Crown Court could be up to 10 years.

In a tough message, Assistant Chief Constable Garry Shewan of Manchester police said, “My message is extremely simple: hundreds and hundreds of people - we have your image, we have your face, we have your acts of wanton criminality on film.

We are coming for you from today, and no matter how long it takes, we will arrest those people responsible.” PTI