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Jail terms upheld for British Facebook rioters

Jordan Blackshaw and Perry Sutcliffe-Keenan were imprisoned after setting up Facebook pages calling for unrest in their home towns.

London: Two men who attempted to use social
networking site Facebook to incite riots during August`s
unprecedented civil disorder in Britain have lost appeals
against their four-year jail terms.

Jordan Blackshaw, 20, from Cheshire and Perry
Sutcliffe-Keenan, 22, from Warrington, both in north-west
England, were imprisoned after setting up Facebook pages
calling for unrest in their home towns.

However, three men who were jailed after admitting
handling stolen goods during the riots had their sentences
halved by the court of appeal.

Igor Judge, the lord chief justice, yesterday called the
level of lawlessness "shocking and wholly inexcusable" and
stressed those severe sentences "must follow" to serve as both
punishment and deterrent.

"The context hugely aggravates the seriousness of each
individual offence," he added. "The sheer numbers involved may
have led some of the offenders to believe that they were
untouchable and would escape detection."

Judge, along with fellow ruling judges John Thomas and
Brian Leveson, said it was therefore correct to hand out
sentences "beyond the range in the guidelines for conventional

Blackshaw`s page, "Smash Down Northwich Town",
encouraged people to gather "behind maccies" -- believed to be
the McDonald`s restaurant in Northwich town centre.

Sutcliffe-Keenan`s creation, "Let`s Have a Riot in
Latchford", called for people to riot the following day.

Judge highlighted technology`s power to enable "the
rapid movement and congregation of disorderly groups in new
and unpoliced areas," calling it a "sinister aspect" of the


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