Killers and paedophiles given softer sentences than jailed Marine

  • Sgt Alexander Blackman was given life for ‘moment of madness’ in battle
  • But civilian courts are giving killers and paedophiles shorter prison terms
  • Mail campaign has been launched for a review of Blackman’s court martial
  • His family and supporters have also launched a fighting fund to support the costs of his appeal. To contribute, visit www.dailymail.co.uk/blackman 

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Killers and paedophiles are serving only a few years in jail while Royal Marine Alexander Blackman was given life for a ‘moment of madness’ in battle.

A court martial convicted the sergeant of murder after he shot a Taliban insurgent who was already fatally wounded.

Yet research by the Daily Mail shows that those responsible for appalling crimes are escaping with much lower sentences than his.

Civilian courts are giving short prison terms to dozens of killers, rapists and violent attackers. 

In particular, those convicted of manslaughter are often handed sentences of just a few years and are eligible for parole after serving half this time. 

The same applies to killer drivers and even paedophiles. But those convicted of murder receive a mandatory life sentence, most commonly with a minimum term of 12 years.

Blackman, known in court proceedings only as Marine A, has been languishing in prison since he was convicted in December 2013.

Two years earlier, he was caught on a head camera shooting the insurgent who had been seriously wounded in a helicopter strike. He was trying to storm a British outpost.

A court martial jailed Blackman for life and warned he would serve a minimum of ten years in a civilian prison. 

This was later reduced to eight years. Blackman, who described his offence as a ‘moment of madness’ remains in Erlestoke jail, in Wiltshire. He is believed to be the only British soldier to have been convicted of committing murder on a foreign battlefield.

A campaign has been launched for a review because of fundamental flaws in the way the case was conducted. A Mail investigation has revealed that:

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  • Blackman and his troop were at breaking point after their ‘tour from hell’ in Helmand that saw comrades tortured and killed;
  • His court martial was blocked from hearing about these mitigating circumstances;
  • A high-flying colonel resigned in protest at not being able to give mitigating evidence at the court martial. 

Had Blackman been given the option of a manslaughter charge – on the basis of mitigating circumstances – it would have led to a shorter sentence.

Last night the 72-year-old mother of a vulnerable man killed in the street attacked the sentence handed to the Marine.

Pamela Young’s son Andrew, who was 40 but had a mental age of 14, died after challenging a man for cycling on the pavement. Lewis Gill punched him without warning. Gill was jailed for just four years after admitting manslaughter and could be out early next year.

Mrs Young said: ‘I have to cope with Andrew’s death for the rest of my life and he will probably only serve two years. 

SIX CRIMINALS HANDED SHORTER SENTENCES THAN MARINE BLACKMAN

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‘It gives out the message that you can get away with it. It’s an unfair justice system. This Marine did a good thing and should not have been punished.

‘Sending him to prison is like imprisoning one of our boys for shooting a German in the Second World War. He’s a hero not a criminal.’

The legal fund for Sergeant Blackman soared beyond £350,000 yesterday!

The Daily Mail launched its campaign eight days ago – and the total is still rising. Every day this week, donations and letters of support have flooded in to the Mail’s offices and via the http://www.justiceforsgtblackman.co.uk website. 

Former Tory Party deputy chairman Lord Ashcroft has given £50,000.

But Blackman’s team of lawyers have at least a year’s work ahead of them – and the appeal will be costly.

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Sergeant Blackman’s family and supporters have launched a fighting fund to support the legal costs of his appeal. 

If you would like to contribute, visit www.dailymail.co.uk/blackman  

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2 comments

  1. Ian

    I’ll say it again and again, Cameron is guilty of the premeditated murder of those English nationals in a drone strike. Any other cases to take into account?

  2. Pingback: Thousands march to demand jailed Sergeant Alexander Blackman who killed Taliban fighter released | ~~Defender of Faith~Guardian of Truth~~

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