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... to think that a two-year prison sentence is excessive?

(20 Posts)
Riverwalk Thu 13-Dec-12 14:20:43

The vandal who defaced a Rothko at The Tate Modern has been sentenced to two years in prison.

gillybob Thu 13-Dec-12 14:39:22

I agree with you Riverwalk Its often the case that material things are valued so much higher in terms of loss than actual life itself.

Nelliemoser Thu 13-Dec-12 15:20:07

It might have looked better afterwards! grin wink But seriously; it was criminal damage and he deserved it. I disapprove in principle.

I would not like to see that done to a Lowry or a Pre-Raphaelite painting, so it should not be done to any others, even if they do not have general appeal.
I cannot be paintingist.

Nelliemoser Thu 13-Dec-12 15:21:38

I am not interested in the financial value or any effects on that.

Riverwalk Thu 13-Dec-12 15:26:07

I do think it warranted a custodial sentence, if only to send a message to any other pranksters who were tempted to make a name for themselves.

Two years just seemed excessive.

JessM Thu 13-Dec-12 15:27:03

I like "paintingist" *nellie".
It would be interesting to try to devise a sentencing policy based on some core values wouldn't it. What tariff do you put on what crime. Getting even two people to agree would be difficult though.
I remember years ago my mother knew a woman who was killed by her ex. He went to her house, with a big knife. He knew how to use it - ex army. He used it. He only got a fairly short sentence for "manslaughter" and was released a couple of years later, much to the horror of the poor grandmother who had custody of the children.

Bags Thu 13-Dec-12 15:27:22

I agree with your anti-paintingist stance, nelliem and I agree that he deserves a punishment in principle. I don't think two years in prison is a suitable punishment though. I' d have been happier to hear of himmhaving to do two years of useful community work. I suppose that's harder to organise though and the courts can only use what punishments are available to them.

CHEELU Thu 13-Dec-12 16:56:50

It was bad what was done but in comparison to drink drivers that only get 2 years for killing someone...the law truly is an Ass especially in the UK, it is tooo lenient..because... the Uk law is saying that if you drink n drive and as a result someones looses their life, you should go away for 2 years and they have given the same sentence to someone that has de faced a painting!! Its just mad

glammanana Thu 13-Dec-12 17:37:38

CHEELUI think maybe the judge was an admirer of modern art ? one never knows, just remember the outcry when the boy who defaced the Centetaph got sentenced everyone wanted to throw away the key,but the same week a man who was found guilty of manslaughter got 2 yrs.Very strange sentencing structures indeed.

Ariadne Thu 13-Dec-12 17:39:55

But surely that is an argument for more severe sentencing for the crimes you mention than for reducing the sentence for an act of criminal damage?

FlicketyB Thu 13-Dec-12 17:47:12

I think community service would have been an appropriate sentence, but as he is Polish national I suppose could always vanish back to Poland and not fulfill a community sentence. But he did do nearly £200,000 pounds of damage to a £ multi-million painting.

The real question is why on earth is Rothko's work worth so much? DS and Dil have a print of a Rothko painting over their fireplace and every time I see it I think it looks like one of those 'match the decor' paintings that Anne Whatshername was always creating in 'The House Doctor'

isthisallthereis Thu 13-Dec-12 17:58:18

He's a fanatic who did it for political purposes. How else do you treat a fanatic? "Yellowist" he calls himself and other stupid nonsense.

Community service? He'd have just gone on damaging paintings.

Yes I know putting him in prison is likely to make a fanatic more fanatical, but back to my question "How else do you treat a fanatic?" Therapy? Persuasion?

vampirequeen Thu 13-Dec-12 20:34:10

Why not give him a shorter sentence then send him back to Poland? I have no problem with anyone being here but I expect them to abide by our laws. If not they should be deported.

johanna Thu 13-Dec-12 20:47:11

cheelu I think you will find that the law states that a person under the influence of alcohol is not responsible for his/her actions!

So yes, the law is an Ass.

whenim64 Thu 13-Dec-12 21:05:33

johanna I don't know where you've read that, but the law most definitely does hold people responsible for their actions, drunk or not. smile

Convicted offenders who have been under the influence are often required to address their alcohol problem as part of their sentence, or simply banned from driving, for example, because they were over the limit.

Ana Thu 13-Dec-12 21:10:53

That's certainly not true, johanna! If it were, half the crimes committed in this country would not be prosecutable!

Ana Thu 13-Dec-12 21:11:29

Is that a proper word? confused

AnneMaria Fri 14-Dec-12 10:05:07

The issue seems to be was the sentence comparable with others. Is there a higher value put on material goods? Kill a person while sending a phone text and you get three years. Doesn't seem to match up. Life is cheap.

CHEELU Sat 15-Dec-12 12:24:31

Bottom line,, the Law in the UK is toooo lenient, take our prisons, prisoners get SKY!!! In Australia the prisons are horrific, I saw a programme abt it, maybe that's why crime in Aus is no were near as bad as UK. In Egypt if you are caught stealing the punishment is they chop your hands off--was told this. Plus I think its wrong that the Judge may have taken into consideration his own personal views on Art.

whenim64 Sat 15-Dec-12 13:09:50

To put it into context, 3,000 eligible prisoners who have either earned enhanced status because of good behaviour, or are on remand and not convicted, out of nearly 90,000 in the prison system, are able to watch SKY at certain times of the day i.e. association in the TV room, IF their prison has got SKY. The majority of prisons haven't bought SKY. Those that have and are eligible can watch films that are streamed on SKY as approved by supervising officers, in the evenings before lock down or lights out, usually in the TV room on the wing, that is used for meetings, art therapy and groupwork in the daytime. It is required that prisoners be treated humanely and they are allowed some entertainment in the form of TV, radio, books etc as a balance to education, work, treatment/offending behaviour programmes, particuarly for the high percentage of mentally disordered and ill prisoners who pose a high risk of self harm and suicide. Prisoners don't always have good reading skills, despite being offered literacy and numeracy support as soon as they enter prison, so reading a good book is not an option for everyone.