A 17-year-old youth has pleaded guilty to two charges of inciting racial hatred after he posted hate-filled videos on YouTube in what the Crown Prosecution Service says is the first case of its kind in England and Wales.
CPS lawyer, Viv Goddard said: ‘The teenager was just 15 when he was arrested on suspicion of posting white supremacist material on YouTube and a website he had set up himself.
‘This is thought to be the first time the CPS has prosecuted someone in England and Wales as young as this defendant for incitement to racial hatred after posting racially inflammatory material on a social networking site.
‘Young people need to realise that it is not a joke to post hate filled material on video sharing websites or sites they set up themselves. The material in this case was not just offensive but highly disturbing in its violence and imagery, particularly one clip which showed a Black man being hanged by the Ku Klux Klan then his leg being hacked off and thrown into a fire.
‘People are entitled to hold racist and extreme opinions which others may find offensive and obnoxious. What they are not entitled to do is to publish or distribute those opinions to the public in a threatening, abusive or insulting manner either intending to stir up racial hatred or in circumstances where it is likely racial hatred will be stirred up.’
Mrs Goddard said it was difficult for the youth to deny responsibility as he had either filmed himself expressing racist opinions or had supplied his own comments as a voice over.
She said: ‘To put this in context, on his own website, he insisted that those who wanted to view his site had to sign up to the following statements before they were allowed access.’
These statements were:
* I do swear and verify that I am of the white race
* I am not addicted to or a user of illegal drugs
* I am not or have never been a follower of the Jewish religion
* I believe in the segregation of the races and I have never engaged in an inter-racial relationship
* I believe in and will defend my Country, Homeland and its Constitution and laws.
Mrs Goddard said: ‘This case should highlight to other young people that if they put material like this on the internet they could end up with a serious criminal conviction which will follow them for the rest of their lives.
Notes to Editors
1. For further information contact CPS Press Office 020 7796 8105.
2. The date of birth of the defendant is 16 June 1992. He lives in North Norfolk.
3. He admitted two charges at Kings Lynn Youth Court on Wednesday, 17 February 2010:
On or before 22 April 2008 he distributed a recording of visual images and sounds, namely a video clip titled ‘niggers.avi ‘, that was threatening, abusive, or insulting, intending thereby to stir up racial hatred or whereby, having regard to all the circumstances, racial hatred was likely to be stirred up. Contrary to Sec 21 Public Order Act 1986.
On or before 22 April 2008 he distributed a recording of visual images and sounds, namely a video clip titled Clip046.avi, that was threatening, abusive, or insulting, intending thereby to stir up racial hatred or whereby, having regard to all the circumstances, racial hatred was likely to be stirred up. Contrary to Sec 21 Public Order Act 1986.
The maximum custodial sentence in the youth court is a detention and training order of no more than 24 months. On 20 November 2009 the Sentencing Guidelines Council published its definitive guideline ‘Overarching Principles Sentencing Youths’, which apply to offenders sentenced on or after 30 November 2009. Please see the SGC website at: http://www.sentencing-guidelines.gov.uk/
4. The Crown Prosecution Service is the independent authority responsible for prosecuting criminal cases investigated by the police in England and Wales. It is responsible for:
Advising the police and reviewing the evidence on cases for possible prosecutionDeciding the charge where the decision is to prosecutePreparing cases for courtPresenting cases at courtThe CPS consists of 42 Areas in total, each headed by a Chief Crown Prosecutor (CCP). These are organised into 14 Groups, plus CPS London, each overseen by Group Chair, a senior CCP. In addition there are five specialised national divisions: Organised Crime, Special Crime, Counter-Terrorism, Fraud Prosecution, and Revenue and Customs. A telephone service, CPS Direct, provides out-of-hours advice and decisions to police officers across England and Wales. The CPS employs around 8,250 people and prosecuted 1,032,598 cases with an overall conviction rate of 86.6% in 2008-2009. Further information can be found on our website. More about the CPS
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