I note that Denis MacShane was sentenced to 6 months imprisonment for stealing £13,000 of taxpayers’ money.
He pleaded guilty to false accounting, submitting 19 fake receipts for "research and translation" services. He used the money to fund a series of trips to Europe, including one to judge a literary competition in Paris.
He had been Europe Minister under Tony Blair, and gave a multi-language reply to the judge as he handed down the sentence, saying that McShane would have to serve at least half of the sentence: “Cheers”, he said, followed by “quelle surprise”. How European!
I suppose we should be grateful that at least he has had the guts to face his trial and sentence without springing a nervous breakdown, or Alzheimer’s on us, but I find it disconcerting, and worrying that a lad whole stole two bottles of water after one of the riots in London a couple of years ago, got exactly the same sentence as this man who wilfully stole £13,000.