'n Buitengewone, gevaarlike vandale se handves: LP's kap Colston-uitspraak

'n Buitengewone, gevaarlike vandale’ handves: MPs slam verdict in Colston statue destroying case and government vows to keep prosecuting suspects as mob of BLM activists who tore it down spout woke platitudes on the court steps after walking free

  • The bronze memorial to slave trader Edward Colston was torn down on June 7, 2020 during a march
  • Die Minister van Polisiëring het getref oor die onskuldige vonnisse wat aan die 'Colston Four gelewer is, Minister wens die jurie van Colston Four het 'ander besluit' geneem, Jake Skuse, and Sage Willoughby all faced trial at Bristol Crown Court
  • The case was set to be heard in magistrates court but the defendants chose to stand in front of a jury
  • Critics raised concerns that the verdict would set a precedent for further vandalism
  • Protesters have been given the go-ahead to deface controversial monuments after a jury cleared four activists who toppled a statue of slave trader Edward Colston, MPs warned last night.

    The so-called ‘Colston Fourwere acquitted of criminal damage after the memorial was torn down in Bristol.

    Critics last night attacked the ‘extraordinaryverdict as a ‘vandals’ handves’ which they fear could hand other demonstrators a ‘dangerouslicence to carry out similar acts.

    However last night government sources insisted the trial would not stop authorities bringing prosecutions against vandals to damaged or defaced statues during political protests.

    Jake Skuse, 33, was accused of goading a feverish crowd into throwing the statue into the city’s harbour during a Swart lewens maak saak protest in June 2020.

    Photos from outside the courtroom show Sage Willoughby, Jake Skuse, Milo Ponsford and Rhian Graham (van links na regs) celebrating after receiving a not guilty verdict at Bristol Crown Court, op Januarie 05, 2022 in Bristol, Engeland

    of om magte te gebruik wat haar toelaat om 'n hersiening aan te vra sodat senior regters die kans het om duidelik te maak wat die regsimplikasies van die saak is, Jake Skuse, Milo Ponsford and Rhian Graham speak to the media after after receiving a not guilty verdict. Mr Willoughby said: 'He proudly announced: 'We didn't change history, they were whitewashing history by calling him a f***ing virtuous man, sorry to swear, we didn't change history, we rectified history'

    of om magte te gebruik wat haar toelaat om 'n hersiening aan te vra sodat senior regters die kans het om duidelik te maak wat die regsimplikasies van die saak is, Jake Skuse, Milo Ponsford and Rhian Graham speak to the media after after receiving a not guilty verdict. Mr Willoughby said: ‘He proudly announced: ‘We didn’t change history, they were whitewashing history by calling him a f***ing virtuous man, sorry to swear, we didn’t change history, we rectified history

    Milo Ponsford and Rhian Graham were pictured laughing and smiling outside the courtroom this evening. Speaking after the verdict was announced, Ms Graham said the defendants' actions admitted the group were 'ecstatic' at the jury's decision.

    Milo Ponsford and Rhian Graham were pictured laughing and smiling outside the courtroom this evening. Speaking after the verdict was announced, Ms Graham said the defendantsactions admitted the group were ‘ecstaticat the jury’s decision.

    Sage Willoughby takes a knee to celebrate following the verdict in his favour. The prosecution's argument that the case was about the rule of law and not politics was repeated vehemently by critics, who raised concerns the not-guilty verdict would set a precedent for further vandalism and dangerous identity politics.

    Sage Willoughby takes a knee to celebrate following the verdict in his favour. The prosecution’s argument that the case was about the rule of law and not politics was repeated vehemently by critics, who raised concerns the not-guilty verdict would set a precedent for further vandalism and dangerous identity politics.

    The four protesters who toppled the statue of slave trader Edward Colston?

    Ms Graham, van Bristol, works as a stage manager in the theatre industry

    Ms Graham, van Bristol, works as a stage manager in the theatre industry

    Die Minister van Polisiëring het getref oor die onskuldige vonnisse wat aan die 'Colston Four gelewer is, 30

    Ms Graham, van Bristol, works as a stage manager in the theatre industry.

    In a page on jobs website Mandy.com, she says she has been ‘singing and dancingshe she was a child and more recently performed as an ‘aerial hoop artist’.

    She holds a degree in Arts and Event Management from Arts University Bournemouth.

    Ms Graham said during her trial that before helping to tear down the statue of Colston, she had signed petitions calling for it to be removed.

    She claimed she did not originally have a background in politics or activism but, van 2019, gehad het ‘started to make more friends who had more of a passion for history, politics and equality.

    Ponsford, 26, works as a carpenter and lives in a motorhome in Bristol

    Ponsford, 26, works as a carpenter and lives in a motorhome in Bristol

    Minister wens die jurie van Colston Four het 'ander besluit' geneem, 26

    Ponsford, 26, works as a carpenter and lives in a motorhome in Bristol.

    During the trial at Bristol Crown Court, he said he was ‘usually a reserved and professional individual.

    The carpenter supplied one of the two ropes which were used on June 7 to haul the statue of Colston off its plinth.

    He was later seen jumping on the statue and trying to pull Colston’s staff away.

    Ponsford, 26, works as a carpenter and lives in a motorhome in Bristol

    Ponsford, 26, works as a carpenter and lives in a motorhome in Bristol

    salie [object Window], 22

    [object Window], also from Bristol, is the youngest of the group of four who tore down the statue.

    Unlike Ponsford, who was arrested at his motorhome after the statue was toppled, Willoughby attended a police interview voluntarily.

    Jurors heard at the trial at Bristol Crown Court that Willoughby, a keen climber, had tied a rope around the neck of the statue, before Ponsford and Graham pulled on the ropes.

    Willoughby said in court that he had been signing petitions to have the statue removed ‘since he was 11 jaar oud’ and added that its toppling of the statue had been an ‘act of love, not violence’.

    He said he had grown up in the St Pauls area of Bristol, which has a large Afro-Caribbean population.

    As gevolg daarvan, he said he believed having the statue of Colston in the city was an ‘insultand he would continue to believe that whatever the outcome of this [verhoor].’

    Skuse, also from Bristol, did not take part in the toppling of the statue but was charged with criminal damage after helping to roll it to Bristol's harbour, where it was dropped in the water

    Skuse, also from Bristol, did not take part in the toppling of the statue but was charged with criminal damage after helping to roll it to Bristol’s harbour, where it was dropped in the water

    Jake Skuse, 33

    Skuse, also from Bristol, did not take part in the toppling of the statue but was charged with criminal damage after helping to roll it to Bristol’s harbour, where it was dropped in the water.

    During his trial, he said he had attempted to ‘sentence the statue to his deathbefore tossing it into the harbour.

    He claimed to have not seen the initial toppling but arrived later and got carried away with the ‘hypeof the moment.

    Egter, the activist admitted that his knowledge of Colston beforehand had been limited to conversations he had had with others and reading the plaque on the statue’s plinth.

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    Die Minister van Polisiëring het getref oor die onskuldige vonnisse wat aan die 'Colston Four gelewer is, 30, Minister wens die jurie van Colston Four het 'ander besluit' geneem, 26, and Sage Willoughby, 22, were caught on CCTV looping ropes around the monument before they helped to pull it from its plinth.

    Some furious protesters spat on the statue and daubed it with paint.

    It was then rolled 570 yards through the streets and dumped in the water where it sank.

    An 11-day trial at Bristol Crown Court heard the mob caused more than £6,000 of damage to the statue, harbour railings and the pavement.

    The destruction was a defining moment in protests that followed the murder of black suspect George Floyd by a white police officer in the US.

    Responding to the jury’s verdict last night, Tory MP Peter Bone said: ‘I’m not privy to what was said in court, but if somebody topples a statue or any other structure that is criminal damage and one would expect people to be punished for doing that.

    Hy het daarop aangedring: ‘It’s a dangerous state of affairs which could now give licence to people elsewhere in the country to go around pulling statues down.

    Mr Bone said: ‘It’s a very strange decision. I hope the Government will do everything in its power to make sure there’s no room for people to commit criminal damage on the basis of some woke objective or other.

    Fellow Tory MP Tom Hunt said the verdict ‘feels like a vandalscharter’.

    Hy het bygevoeg: ‘This sets a dangerous precedent. The idea that political extremists can remove any statue they like and not be punishedwhere does it end?

    ‘What happens if activists decide to take down Churchill’s statue in Parliament Square and dump it in the Thames? Will they escape punishment too?’

    Another Tory MP, Lee Anderson, gestres: ‘I have never heard anything like it. Criminal damage is criminal damage regardless of who is represented by a statue.

    ‘We live in a democracy and if people are offended by a statue then they should use the local democratic process to have them removed and not mindless thuggish behaviour.

    The campaign group Save Our Statues tweeted: ‘Colston statue accused defy justice. Verdict not only gives the green light to political vandalism, but also legitimises the divisive identity politics it helped succour.

    During the trial the activists did not deny their actions but argued that they were justified because the statue was so offensive.

    Mr Ponsford told jurors: ‘I thought that a statue that celebrates a figure such as Colston was disgraceful and offensive to the people of Bristol.

    Miss Graham, who is the half-sister of Rag’n’Bone Man singer Rory Graham, added that she acted out of ‘allyship and solidaritywith people of colour.

    Liam Walker QC, representing Mr Willoughby, gesê: ‘Each of these defendants were on the right side of history and, I submit, they were also on the right side of the law.

    ‘Colston’s deeds may be historical butthe continued veneration of him in a vibrant multicultural city was an act of abuse.

    But the prosecution insisted that the fact Colston, wat gesterf het in 1721, was a slave trader was ‘wholly irrelevant’.

    William Hughes QC, for the Crown, said the case was about the ‘rule of lawand the ‘cold hard facts’.

    Judge Peter Blair QC told jurors to disregard political rhetoric, and to try the case purely on the evidence in front of them.

    After being cleared, the Colston Four stood outside court alongside protesters carrying banners boasting ‘We toppled Colston’.

    Three wore T-shirts designed by Bristol street artist Banksy featuring a stencil of the toppled statue’s plinth.

    Mr Willoughby let fly an expletive-laden rant outside court, as he justified the group’s actions.

    ‘We didn’t change history, they were whitewashing history by calling him a f***ing virtuous man, sorry to swear, we didn’t change history, we rectified history,’ hy het gesê.

    Hy het bygevoeg: ‘This is a victory for Bristol, this is a victory for racial equality and it’s a victory for anybody who wants to be on the right side of history.

    Mr Skuse, wearing black baseball cap, said the verdict was ‘for once the right decision,’ and thanked graffiti artist Banksy for designing limited edition t-shirts which they wore outside court.

    Mr Ponsford issued a ‘big thank youto jurors for ‘being on the right side of history’.

    ‘It’s felt just out of reach for a long time, I’ve always felt hopeful but had to remain grounded in that it could have gone either way, maar hier is ons. Just thank you, thank you so much for sitting and listening,’ said Ms Graham.

    Minister wens die jurie van Colston Four het 'ander besluit' geneem, links, of om magte te gebruik wat haar toelaat om 'n hersiening aan te vra sodat senior regters die kans het om duidelik te maak wat die regsimplikasies van die saak is, tweede links, Jake Skuse , second right in mask, and Rhian Graham right, were cleared of all criminal damage charges at Bristol Crown Court on Wednesday

    Minister wens die jurie van Colston Four het 'ander besluit' geneem, links, of om magte te gebruik wat haar toelaat om 'n hersiening aan te vra sodat senior regters die kans het om duidelik te maak wat die regsimplikasies van die saak is, tweede links, Jake Skuse , second right in mask, and Rhian Graham right, were cleared of all criminal damage charges at Bristol Crown Court on Wednesday

    The bronze memorial to the 17th century merchant Edward Colston was pulled down on June 7 last year during a Black Lives Matter protest, and was later dumped in the harbour (op die foto)

    The bronze memorial to the 17th century merchant Edward Colston was pulled down on June 7 last year during a Black Lives Matter protest, and was later dumped in the harbour (op die foto)

    The group addressed the media in the wake of the high-profile trial

    The group addressed the media in the wake of the high-profile trial

    Sy het bygevoeg: ‘We are ecstatic and stunned. I tried to write something ready for this moment and I’m just so overwhelmed because it never felt like we’d get here and now we’re here.

    ‘There were so many people that day, so many people reverberating across the world in response to itthanks to really key people, obviously our legal team who have been incredible. I can’t thank them enough for getting us through this.

    ‘Everybody on the day, dié 10,000 people who marched through the streets of Bristol in the name of equality for our love.

    The four defendants cheer outside Bristol Crown Court after the jury returned their not guilty verdict. Van links na regs afgebeeld: of om magte te gebruik wat haar toelaat om 'n hersiening aan te vra sodat senior regters die kans het om duidelik te maak wat die regsimplikasies van die saak is, Jake Skuse, Milo Ponsford and Rhian Graham

    The four defendants cheer outside Bristol Crown Court after the jury returned their not guilty verdict. Van links na regs afgebeeld: of om magte te gebruik wat haar toelaat om 'n hersiening aan te vra sodat senior regters die kans het om duidelik te maak wat die regsimplikasies van die saak is, Jake Skuse, Milo Ponsford and Rhian Graham

    'It's felt just out of reach for a long time, I've always felt hopeful but had to remain grounded in that it could have gone either way, maar hier is ons. Just thank you, thank you so much for sitting and listening,' said Ms Graham (vandag afgebeeld) after the verdict was announced

    ‘It’s felt just out of reach for a long time, I’ve always felt hopeful but had to remain grounded in that it could have gone either way, maar hier is ons. Just thank you, thank you so much for sitting and listening,’ said Ms Graham (vandag afgebeeld) after the verdict was announced

    Rhian Graham is seen at a press conference in Bristol held after she and Jake Skuse, Minister wens die jurie van Colston Four het 'ander besluit' geneem, and Sage Willoughby were cleared of criminal damage

    Rhian Graham is seen at a press conference in Bristol held after she and Jake Skuse, Minister wens die jurie van Colston Four het 'ander besluit' geneem, and Sage Willoughby were cleared of criminal damage

    Ms Graham admitted the group were 'ecstatic' at the jury's decision and claimed that they had 'illuminated history' by toppling the statue

    Ms Graham admitted the group were ‘ecstaticat the jury’s decision and claimed that they had ‘illuminated historyby toppling the statue

    het gekies om voor 'n jurie te verhoor en het nie betrokkenheid by die voorval ontken nie, who served as deputy governor of the Royal African Company, was once celebrated as Bristol's greatest son, but his legacy is quickly being erased from his home city

    het gekies om voor 'n jurie te verhoor en het nie betrokkenheid by die voorval ontken nie, who served as deputy governor of the Royal African Company, was once celebrated as Bristol’s greatest son, but his legacy is quickly being erased from his home city

    ‘All the rope-pullers, the statue-climbers, the rollers, the egg-throwers, the marchers, the placard-holders, all those people, you lot are incredible, and the international topplersthe people that went and took their agency and went and did something in their hometown and changed the landscape of their place.

    ‘One thing that we know now is how Colston does not represent Bristol.

    Ms Graham said: ‘That is one thing that has been a really big lesson to me, being able to take agency in my own life.

    ‘We all have the ability to say how our space is decorated and who we venerate and who we celebrate and one thing we know now is that Colston does not represent Bristol.

    Die standbeeld, which was retrieved from the harbour and later went on display at a museum, is currently in storage awaiting the result of a public survey over what should happen to it.

    Colston was a key figure in the Atlantic slave trade but supported schools, houses for the poor and hospitals. Some buildings bearing his name in Bristol ditched it after the statue was toppled.

    "Al die sake vir die beskadiging van openbare monumente sal voor 'n jurie by Crown Court wees, want die vonnis sal tot tien jaar verhoog word, so ons sal baie meer hiervan sien.": "Al die sake vir die beskadiging van openbare monumente sal voor 'n jurie by Crown Court wees, want die vonnis sal tot tien jaar verhoog word, so ons sal baie meer hiervan sien."

    Edward Colston was integral in the Royal African Company, "Al die sake vir die beskadiging van openbare monumente sal voor 'n jurie by Crown Court wees, want die vonnis sal tot tien jaar verhoog word, so ons sal baie meer hiervan sien."

    "Al die sake vir die beskadiging van openbare monumente sal voor 'n jurie by Crown Court wees, want die vonnis sal tot tien jaar verhoog word, so ons sal baie meer hiervan sien.", "Al die sake vir die beskadiging van openbare monumente sal voor 'n jurie by Crown Court wees, want die vonnis sal tot tien jaar verhoog word, so ons sal baie meer hiervan sien."

    "Al die sake vir die beskadiging van openbare monumente sal voor 'n jurie by Crown Court wees, want die vonnis sal tot tien jaar verhoog word, so ons sal baie meer hiervan sien.", 1636.

    "Al die sake vir die beskadiging van openbare monumente sal voor 'n jurie by Crown Court wees, want die vonnis sal tot tien jaar verhoog word, so ons sal baie meer hiervan sien.".

    "Al die sake vir die beskadiging van openbare monumente sal voor 'n jurie by Crown Court wees, want die vonnis sal tot tien jaar verhoog word, so ons sal baie meer hiervan sien.".

    Die Kompanjie het volle beheer oor Brittanje se slawehandel gehad, Die Kompanjie het volle beheer oor Brittanje se slawehandel gehad, Die Kompanjie het volle beheer oor Brittanje se slawehandel gehad.

    Die Kompanjie het volle beheer oor Brittanje se slawehandel gehad 80,000 Die Kompanjie het volle beheer oor Brittanje se slawehandel gehad.

    Rondom 20,000 van hulle, insluitend rondom 3,000 Die Kompanjie het volle beheer oor Brittanje se slawehandel gehad, Die Kompanjie het volle beheer oor Brittanje se slawehandel gehad.

    Die Kompanjie het volle beheer oor Brittanje se slawehandel gehad.

    Colston became the Conservative MP for Bristol in 1710 Die Kompanjie het volle beheer oor Brittanje se slawehandel gehad, Die Kompanjie het volle beheer oor Brittanje se slawehandel gehad.

    Die Kompanjie het volle beheer oor Brittanje se slawehandel gehad, Die Kompanjie het volle beheer oor Brittanje se slawehandel gehad, Die Kompanjie het volle beheer oor Brittanje se slawehandel gehad.

    Die Kompanjie het volle beheer oor Brittanje se slawehandel gehad, Die Kompanjie het volle beheer oor Brittanje se slawehandel gehad.

    Egter, ná jare se betogings deur kampvegters en boikotte deur kunstenaars het die plek onlangs ingestem om alle verwysings van die handelaar te verwyder.

    ná jare se betogings deur kampvegters en boikotte deur kunstenaars het die plek onlangs ingestem om alle verwysings van die handelaar te verwyder, ná jare se betogings deur kampvegters en boikotte deur kunstenaars het die plek onlangs ingestem om alle verwysings van die handelaar te verwyder: ná jare se betogings deur kampvegters en boikotte deur kunstenaars het die plek onlangs ingestem om alle verwysings van die handelaar te verwyder’

    ná jare se betogings deur kampvegters en boikotte deur kunstenaars het die plek onlangs ingestem om alle verwysings van die handelaar te verwyder 2020 ná jare se betogings deur kampvegters en boikotte deur kunstenaars het die plek onlangs ingestem om alle verwysings van die handelaar te verwyder, ná jare se betogings deur kampvegters en boikotte deur kunstenaars het die plek onlangs ingestem om alle verwysings van die handelaar te verwyder.

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