Before I am shot down in flames, let me say that I wish Paul J Chambers every success and more in his quest to shake off the ridiculous conviction for threatening to blow Robin Hood airport sky high.
I've never been an accountant. I know some people who have though, and, when pressed, they will tell of the training they've been given. It involves things like checking numbers to make sure that no bad deeds are being done, that things are on target, that boxes are ticked. It's a little more complicated than that, but not much.
None of them, so far as I can tell, have had any real training in the development and deployment of any quantities of plastic explosive, timers, triggers, remote detonation devices or the like. Apparently it isn't part of the job description.
Now, I know how to make a sizeable bomb. I also have enough equipment right here to design and develop a device which COULD blow Robin Hood airport sky high. I don't have the inclination to make such a thing at the moment, and I have a real problem with maiming and killing innocent people. I don't know Paul personally but he seems a good sort, so I'm pretty sure he doesn't have the inclination or the motive, either.
Sometimes I get cross. It's a by-product of living in a world that has changed so much since I was a lad, where we built our own bikes out of stuff we got from the landfill site, and played around on building sites and stuff. Where we built our first piano from a couple of scrapped broken ones because we didn't have loads of money. Where I got a box of wood and a saw for one of my birthdays and was chuffed to bits. I still have the saw, which as I remember was the first thing I ever got brand new. Where we made our own fireworks out of weedkiller and sugar, and where Plod came round to check whether I'd really bought that amount of weedkiller for my Dad, or whether I was up to no good. Which I was. Where I got a bollocking. Often.
When I get cross I tend to say what I think. I try not to upset people, apart from those who desperately need it. I have been known to utter such garbage as "Bloody Luton needs blowing up and rebuilding", for instance. I doubt if I could work round the logistics of actually blowing it up, in its entirety. Perhaps I need to try harder.
Anyway, the upshot is that Paul Chambers probably couldn't blow up a banger at a bonfire party. Most people wouldn't have a clue.
Therefore, what he said was bollocks and had no stature in intent nor in ability. Therefore none in law. For the spirit of the law, as any fule or skoolboy kno, is what it's all about.
I read yesterday that the next appeal would involve a "high-flying barrister". That means that some fancy overpaid fancy-dressed chap will be wordsmithing and trying to beat the judiciary with words and cleverness and trickery and the minutiae of the law.
And THAT, chaps, is wrong, so very wrong. That means that, regardless of the outcome of the appeal (and I hope beyond hope that Paul is acquitted and that the previous two judges, the security man, the Plod and the CPS all eat shit), the law has already won.
This case should be revisited at the highest level and this travesty of justice reversed immediately. And Paul should be compensated. Not by the public coffers, by the endless collection of idiots involved, any ONE of whom could have stopped this before it started.