Wife-beater let off jail so he doesn’t lose his job

// 29 June 2006

A civil servant, working for the Department of Constitutional Affairs (responsible for upholding justice, rights, and democracy) has been convicted of assault occasioning actual bodily harm and battery (reported in today’s Metro but I can’t find it online to link to – apparently they don’t put news on the Metro website – just celeb gossip).

A jury found that Mohammed Islam, 28, had made his wife – aged 20 and brought over from Bangladesh last year – a prisoner in her own home, subjecting her to almost daily beatings, restricting her food intake, dragging her by the hair, banging her head against the wall and attacking her with scissors.

Nevertheless, his defence lawyer, Hugo Charlton, described the man’s offences as at the ‘lower end of the scale’ (pity Hugo’s partner…) and asked that the judge spare him a jail term which would ‘completely ruin his career’.

The judge concluded that, based on Mr Islam’s previous good character and lack of previous convictions, he would not send him to prison – instead giving him a community order and telling him to attend a domestic abuse class.

A domestic abuse class? Not wanting to ruin his career? This man was found guilty of attacking his wife with scissors! In what way should we be concerned about his career prospects? As Jess said the other month… I’m not usually a fan of the ‘lock ’em up and throw away the key’ mentality but DAMN surely this is the sort of case where justice should be seen to be done. Doesn’t it completely undermine the laudable efforts of the police to take domestic violence seriously when they actually get someone up before a jury who convicts, and the judge just sends them to night school…?

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