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...and in a shock moment of common sense...


Sir Tokyo Sexwale
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it was a joke

 

f***ing ridiculous this from day 1

 

Paul Chambers, who was found guilty of sending a menacing tweet, has won his high court challenge against his conviction. Outside the court, Chambers, 27, said he felt "relieved and vindicated", adding: "It's ridiculous it ever got so far."

 

He had tweeted in frustration when he discovered that Robin Hood airport in South Yorkshire was closed because of snow. Eager to see his girlfriend, he sent out a tweet on the publicly accessible site declaring: "Crap! Robin Hood airport is closed. You've got a week and a bit to get your s*** together otherwise I'm blowing the airport sky high!!"

 

He has always maintained that he did not believe anyone would take his "silly joke" seriously.

 

The lord chief justice, Lord Judge, sitting with Mr Justice Owen and Mr Justice Griffith Williams, said: "We have concluded that, on an objective assessment, the decision of the crown court that this 'tweet' constituted or included a message of a menacing character was not open to it.

 

"On this basis, the appeal against conviction must be allowed."

 

Chambers said outside court: "It was a long, hard road. I would like to thank everyone on Twitter." He had lost two jobs because of his conviction, he said, but "it was now time to move on".

 

After the judgment Chambers's supporters accused the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) of wasting public funds in pursuing its action against the trainee accountant.

 

Louise Mensch, who is Chambers's constituency MP, was in court to hear him cleared. "The CPS owe the whole country an enormous apology," she said, "for having wasted public money and put him through two and a half years of serious stress for what was a joke.

 

"When parliament returns we will be asking searching questions about why freedom of speech was trashed. There was nothing menacing about this message. It was completely obvious."

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