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Courts Work Through The Night To Process Riot Charges

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New figures reveal the extent of the police crackdown on the rioters, with more arrests expected in the coming days.

According to West Midlands Police, 345 people have been arrested this week in connection with the unrest, while the Metropolitan Police have arrested 950 people so far, with 457 of those already charged.

The Met has also revealed that around half of those who had already appeared in court were less than 18-years-old. Hundreds more have been arrested and charged in Manchester and other cities.

In London, the disturbances, which began on Saturday, led to 186 officers being injured.

Earlier today, West Midlands Police arrested three men in connection with the killing of Haroon Jahan, 21, Shahzad Ali, 30, and his brother, Abdul Musavir, 31, who were knocked down by a car in the Birmingham riots.

Courts have remained in session as hundreds of people charged in connection to rioting offences were hauled in front of magistrates.

Meanwhile the Malaysian student who became an internet phenomenon after being mugged by youths has told a press conference that he "feels sorry" for his attackers.

Mohd Asyraf Raziq Rosli was filmed during the disturbances in London being first hit by rioters, and then being mugged after the same attackers appeared to help him to his feet.

The student said that he planned to finish his studies in the UK, and said that he still thought Britain was "great" despite his ordeal. When asked by reporters how he was managing to stay so positive, he replied "I seriously have no idea."

Describing the experience - now so horribly familiar to the hundreds of thousands who have watched it on YouTube - he said he was making his way to a friend's house in Hackney in order to escape the riots when he was assaulted by one group of youths.

A 20-year-old man has now been arrested in connection the attack, the Metropolitan Police have said.

Greater Manchester Police said that 97 people had been charged with offences there, including a 45-year-old man who tried to gouge out a policeman's eyes.

Meanwhile the London Evening Standard reported that police were angry at the 'soft sentences' being handed out to convicted rioters.


The courts been pushed to quickly process those arrested as the government looks to send out a message of deterrence.
Photos posted to Twitter appeared to show custody vans waiting in line to process those who have been charged.

West Midlands Police said that more than 20 people had already been jailed on various offences, including a man who was sentenced to six months in prison after looting £3,500 worth of cigarettes.

In Manchester police said that at least five people had already been jailed for assault, theft and public order offences.

Bernard Moore, 36, was sentenced to five months for assaulting a police officer. Eoin Flanagan was jailed for eight months for stealing clothes, and Jason Ullet, 38, was sentenced for ten weeks on a public order offence. Two others received similar sentences, also on public order offences.

Those who have appeared in front of magistrates include a primary school mentor, a charity worker and a lifeguard, according to the Daily Mail.

In Nottinghamshire an 11-year-old girl was charged with criminal damage and attempted criminal damage and was remanded in custody.

In London a graduate who said she wanted to become a social worker pleaded guilty to stealing a TV from a branch of Comet in Enfield. Natasha Reid, 24, from Edmonton, appeared at Westminster Magistrates' Court charged with theft and intent to steal after she took a £269 television from the store. Her case was adjourned until September 1. She was one of more than 100 people who appeared at the court.

In Manchester a woman who has 96 previous convictions pleaded guilty to stealing alcohol, cigarettes and mobile phone accessories.

The court heard how Linda Boyd, who is 31, was drunk and found a bin liner containing looted items which she took away to share with friends. She will be sentenced on August 16. The Guardian reported that the woman told the district judge to "shut up" as she walked away.

Also appearing in front of courts was an 11-year-old boy from Romford in Essex, who admitted to looting the Debenhams store in his home town on Monday night. Because of his age, the boy cannot be named. In court, he spoke only to confirm his name, age and date of birth.

The Highbury Court Magistrates in north London, where the youth appeared, has witnessed such an influx of cases that it was forced to sit through all of Tuesday and Wednesday night to clear the backlog.

Another man who appeared before Highbury Court was 31-year-old Alexis Bailey, who pleaded guilty to burglary with intent to steal from Richer Sounds in Croydon. He was released on bail and will be sentenced at Wood Green Crown Court at a future date.

Bailey received further notoriety online after he was filmed walking into a lamppost while attempting to shield his face with a newspaper outside of court.

In Croydon, the Magistrates court has processed twice as many cases as it does in a typical sitting. Those charged include Joseph Levy, a 41-year-old drug addict who stole a bottle of wine. Also appearing was Ohene Bamfo, a 20-year-old charged with robbery theft and violent disorder, who was remanded in custody. A 14-year-old girl charged with stealing a camera also appeared.

West Midlands Police have announced that they have arrested 389 people in connection with the riots.

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Peter Hitchens: "People riot because they are wicked, selfish and lawless...we have dismantled every form of authority in society."

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For the next hour Sky News is hosting a debate on the riots, with journalists Peter Hitchens and David Aaronovitch. It could get interesting...

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@ SkyNewsBreak : 186 Metropolitan Police officers reported injured since Saturday

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@ SkyNewsBreak : Metropolitan Police have arrested 950 people so far since starts of the riots, 457 of those have been charged

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The met police have arrested a thug for robbing an injured student during the riots.

He is one of 950 people who have been arrested in connection with violence, disorder and looting by the metropolitan police. A total of 457 people have been charged.

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@ SkyNewsBreak : Met Police: Roughly half of 240 people who have appearedin court so far charged over London riots were under 18

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@ TimGatt : K Clarke tells Sky:"This is worse than 25 yrs ago[...]There are several sections of the population that are much more totally irresponsible"

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Mr Cameron has set himself an enormous task here, effectively pledging to reverse the drift of popular culture in Britain and change the way the country thinks and feels.

Read more here

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While this continues, Met police have been making more arrests and raided properties - officers in Brixton, south London, recovered clothing and an iPod,

In Pimlico, West London, they found £1,600 in cash and "thousands of pounds worth of Hugo Boss clothing - all still with the labels on."

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“In recent weeks the prison population has reached record highs and prison and probation officers are being increasingly overstretched. It is vital for public safety and for security in our prisons and the youth secure estate that prison and probation staff get the resources and support they need", he said in a statement released on Thursday.

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@ itv_news : 11-year-old girl charged with criminal damage following disturbances in Nottingham has been given a referral order #riots

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The Mayor of London Boris Johnson has today announced a £50 million fund to help make major long term improvements to the capital’s town centres and high streets damaged by the recent disturbances.

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@ frances_skynews : Ian Jones, 36 unemployed pleads guilty to trespass of a building containing a cash machine with 43k in it.

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View UK Riots in a larger map

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@ NigelNelson : Possibly the best, most thoughtful, speech @Ed_Miliband has made since becoming leader. Close study recommended

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Other games will go ahead at the start of the premier league, but start a bit earlier, David Cameron tells MPs.

"Other matches should go ahead but starting earlier on in the day. I think that is a very sensible decision."

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The package of support being announced today includes:

A £10m recovery fund to help councils with the immediate costs of making their areas safe, clear and clean again. This fund can be used, for example, to clear debris left strewn in streets and make immediate repairs to pavements and roads. This Recovery scheme can also be used to support councils who use their powers to offer council tax discounts or council tax relief to those whose homes have been damaged but are still habitable.

A £20m High Street Support Scheme - funded jointly by the Departments for Communities and Local Government, and Business Innovation and Skills, which will be made available immediately, for the streets and areas where businesses were affected by the rioting. The money is intended to finance those measures that will get business trading again and meet short term costs. Councils will distribute the money and could use it to reduce business rates, finance building repairs and encourage customers back to the affected areas.

In addition, seriously damaged homes and business properties will be taken off the respective valuation lists, and Mr Pickles has strongly encouraged the Valuation Office Agency and local authorities to do so as promptly as possible. This removes any liability for council tax or business rates.

Councils have the power to offer rate relief for local firms, but must pay a quarter of the cost; central government automatically pays for three quarters of the cost. This Scheme will help reimburse councils for their costs, to facilitate immediate and real financial help to be given to small and medium firms to rebuild their local businesses. Business rates are typically the third biggest outgoing for firms after rent and staff.

Re-housing funding to meet the immediate costs of emergency accommodation for families who have been made homeless by the disturbances. As these are exceptional circumstances, Mr Pickles has confirmed that his Department would meet these costs under established homelessness funding processes.

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Commenting on the government's measures to help businesses affected by the riots, Colin Stanbridge, chief executive of the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) said:

“We welcome these announcements by the government, as they offer practical assistance at what is a terrible time for many businesses across London and the UK. We are also pleased to see that the government recognises the importance of getting businesses back up and running.

"It is important, however, that businesses in affected areas that did not experience any direct damage are able to take advantage of the measures announced today, where they have suffered an indirect impact.

"Ultimately though it will be the enduring spirit of London’s businesses that will see them recover from these appalling events, and ensure that the capital remains the best place in the world to do business.”

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This Government has a clear message to the rioters: your one night of madness could have disastrous consequences for the rest of your lives, and for your entire family. .

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@ nickdebois : RT @stewartgjgreen: @nickdebois asks the P M to get schools to assist with identifying rioters and looters <and a good idea it is>thanks!

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"Further militarisation" won't help, she tells the PM

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@ GregHands : Ed Miliband loved seeing his brother slip up there on "elected chief constables", visibly smiling at the mistake.

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David Cameron: It's about giving police more power.

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@ craigawoodhouse : Michael Gove using ipad on Commons front bench. Wonder if he is re-watching newsnight row with Harman?

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He wants "as many people to be nicked" as possible

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@ TimGatt : How Cameron can control a U.S. based site like Da Twitta, I don't know.

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Reverse police cuts, reverse soft prison plans of current Justice Secretary Ken Clarke.

Cameron is standing firm on this, cites police constables who agree with him in Thames Valley.

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@ SkyNewsBreak : Scotland Yard: 922 people arrested in connection with violence in London since Saturday - 401 suspects charged

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