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Twitter Trolls Jailed For Sending Abusive Tweets



Two people who used Twitter to verbally abuse high profile feminist campaigner Caroline Criado-Perez have been jailed.

Isabella Sorley, 23, has been jailed for 12 weeks. She used Twitter to tell Ms Criado-Perez to "f*** off and die you worthless piece of crap", "go kill yourself" and "rape is the last of your worries".

John Nimmo, 25, was jailed for eight weeks. He told Ms Criado-Perez to "shut up bitch" and "Ya not that gd looking to rape u be fine" followed by "I will find you (smiley face)" and then the message "rape her nice ass", Westminster Magistrates' Court heard.

Sentencing Sorley and Nimmo, Judge Howard Riddle said it was "hard to imagine more extreme threats".

The pair bombarded Ms Criado-Perez with the abusive messages last year after she led a successful campaign using social media for a female figure to appear on a Bank of England note.

She responded to the sentencing on Twitter, saying: "I feel immensely relieved that the judge clearly has understood the severity of the impact this abuse has had on me."

Unemployed Nimmo also targeted Stella Creasy, the Labour MP for Walthamstow, with the message "The things I cud do to u (smiley face)", calling her "Dumb blond bitch."

The court previously heard that the MP responded with the message "That's dumb Dr blonde bitch to you".

"Love it at least u can have a laugh", Nimmo responded, to which Ms Creasy said: "I'm not having a laugh, I'm cataloguing your vile conduct #takebacktwitter".

Nimmo, from Moreland Road, South Shields, Tyne and Wear, and Sorley, from Akenside House, Akenside Hill, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, pleaded guilty on January 7 to sending menacing tweets.

They admitted were among the users of 86 separate Twitter accounts from which Ms Criado-Perez, 29, had received abusive messages.

The judge said the effect of the abuse on Ms Criado-Perez had been "life-changing". She describes "panic and fear and horror," he said.

He added that it had also had a "substantial" impact on Ms Creasy, who has had a panic button installed in her home.

The judge said of the abusive tweets: "The fact that they were anonymous heightened the fear.

"The victims had no way of knowing how dangerous the people making the threats were, whether they had just come out of prison, or how to recognise and avoid them if they came across them in public.

The court heard that university-educated Sorley has 25 previous convictions, the majority for being drunk and disorderly.

While on bail for this case, she also committed two offences of assaulting a police officer and is awaiting sentence for an assault on New Year's Day, the court heard.

During mitigation, Sean Caulfield, defending Sorley, said she herself was a "victim" of new technology as she did not understand the impact of what she was doing.

Paul Kennedy, representing Nimmo, described him as a "somewhat sad individual" who is "effectively a social recluse".

Mr Kennedy said that, when Nimmo's original tweet was responded to and retweeted, it encouraged him to send more messages as he saw it as an "indication of popularity".


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What's the most shocking/disturbing instance of twitter trolling you've seen?
Tags: news / news anchors
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