Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1107/31564

From The Socialist newspaper, 28 October 2020

One rule for them, and another for us

Judge gavel, photo Brian Turner (Creative Commons)

Judge gavel, photo Brian Turner (Creative Commons)   (Click to enlarge)

Chris Fernandez, Derby

A Tory election agent Diana Dianescu, has been found guilty of 16 offenses of deliberately misleading voters. She was sentenced to six months custody, suspended for a period of 18 months, and told to undertake 200 hours of community service. She had to pay 2,000 court costs. If you compare and contrast it to the way I was treated, it makes me sick and angry.

Dianescu posed as a representative of the Green Party, Labour Party, or as a council official, when knocking on doors in Hackney, east London in the 2018 local elections. She had acted as election agent for 29 Tory candidates. The judge, in a long speech condemning her behaviour, told Dianescu she had narrowly escaped a prison sentence as she did not represent "a future risk to the public."

Now contrast that to the way I was treated, when I was accused of 'misleading voters' into signing nomination papers in the 2016 council elections in Derby. My case covered eight candidates, it was my first ever offence, and I had no criminal record.

I was sixty when I was sentenced in February 2018. I had health problems with high blood pressure, and had been an out-patient at the memory clinic in the run up to the trial. I was sentenced to 15 months imprisonment, and found guilty to 12 out of 14 counts of misleading voters into signing the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) candidate's nomination forms.

Political Sentencing

At the time, Clive Heemskerk, the TUSC national officer covered the trial and said: "In reality a 15 month prison sentence is totally disproportionate, even if the offences were proven beyond doubt. But what is most disturbing about this case is that there was, in fact, plenty of doubt" (See 'Statement on the sentencing of the Derby TUSC agent' at tusc.org.uk).

In the run-up to the trial I had to pay nearly 5,000 in legal aid fees. I was sent to Nottingham prison and spent 12 weeks there, I did another five weeks in the open prison, and then I was released, but I was on a tag. To top it all, when I came out of prison, within a month I was presented with another legal bill, for nearly 8,500. TUSC launched an appeal and helped to raise half of that, we also received donations from friends. I was ordered to pay about 270 a month. We really struggled to pay, like we did with the legal aid, but we did.

So it was political sentencing. Like a friend of mine said, "it is one rule for them, and another for us."

Donate to the Socialist Party

Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our Fighting Fund.

Please donate here.

All payments are made through a secure server.

My donation

 

Your message: 

 


In The Socialist 28 October 2020:


What we think

Tories' school meals outrage


Coronavirus News

Don't let Tories starve our kids

Tory 'Starve a Kid to Save a Quid' scheme

Boots launches 120, 12-minute Covid test

Under the microscope


Workplace News

Backing Hugo Pierre for Unison general secretary

Royal Mail: No more behind closed doors talks

Fight Leeds Labour council's massive cuts

Workplace news in brief


News

NHS England's 1bn winter shortfall: we need union action, not platitudes!

BAME Covid deaths due to capitalist inequality, confirms government

Mayor and government compete to attack London transport: fight for no cuts!

Grenfell watch: landlord's 800,000 saving


Food Standards

Food and a capitalist Brexit: No trust in Tory Deals!


International News

Nigeria protests shake regime

"We need a leadership that comes from the movement"

Bolivia elections: Crushing defeat for the right as MAS secures landslide victory

US presidential election


Campaigns

Online youth rally says: We won't pay with our futures

Birmingham: 'Refund our fees' protests

Solidarity with the movement in Nigeria

Evicted students can fight back and win

Waltham Forest Save Our Square:

Why I joined the Socialist Party - "I'm 15, and already I've lived through two global recessions and a pandemic"

Bristol jobs protest: We want 100% pay


Readers' Opinion

One rule for them, and another for us

Books that inspired me: Germinal

The Socialist Inbox


 

Home   |   The Socialist 28 October 2020   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Prison:

triangleJudge rules against Julian Assange's extradition but refuses bail

triangleFree Siyanda Mngaza

triangleFrom slavery to Black Lives Matter - racism and capitalist injustice exposed

triangleStreatham attack: Johnson's bill can't stop terror

triangleTV: Crime and Punishment - this brutal watch is a damning indictment of cuts and capitalism

Council:

triangleRyan Aldred: Why I'm standing for Usdaw's EC

triangleNottingham City Council: Major battles against cuts ahead

triangleWelsh trades councils rally against the pay-freeze

Legal aid:

triangleJoin the fight for refugee rights

triangleCourts and tribunal services face huge cuts

triangleLawyers defeat Tories' unjust legal aid cuts

Council elections:

triangleEngland council elections: socialist anti-cuts message chimes with voters

triangleWorcester: Fightback against library cuts

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

20/1/21

Strike

Rolls-Royce Barnoldswick factory future secured following strike action

20/1/21

NHS

On the NHS front line

20/1/21

Women

Socialist Party national women's meeting

20/1/21

Pay

Morrisons - 10/hr headline hides divisive pay offer

20/1/21

PCS

PCS Broad Left Network conference

20/1/21

Black Lives Matter

Police use Covid laws to intimidate BLM protesters

20/1/21

Students

Plymouth rent strike continues

20/1/21

Socialist

Why I joined the Socialist Party

20/1/21

Socialist Students

Refund student rent and fees

20/1/21

Competition

Christmas Crossword Competition

20/1/21

Fire

New Cross Gate fire 40 years ago

20/1/21

Black Lives Matter

Justice for Mohamud Hassan!

20/1/21

Food

Bosses profit out of 'starvation' food parcels

20/1/21

Lockdown

Life in lockdown - being home from school when you're poor is hard

20/1/21

Teachers

Teachers: On the front line, in their own words

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: [email protected]

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 079 8202 1969

East Mids: 077 3797 8057

London: 075 4018 9052

North East: 078 4114 4890

North West 079 5437 6096

South West: 077 5979 6478

Southern: 078 3368 1910

Wales: 079 3539 1947

West Mids: 024 7655 5620

Yorkshire: 077 0671 0041

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


January 2021

2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999