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Gainsborough man jailed over anti-Islam images in his flat window

By Gainsborough Target  |  Posted: March 09, 2012

JAILED: Darren Conway.

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A GAINSBOROUGH man who plastered his front window with vile anti-Islamic hate literature has been jailed for a year.

Darren Conway, a self-confessed supporter of right-wing organisations, was given a 12-months' sentence at Lincoln Crown Court.

The court was told on Tuesday that carer Conway had covered the front window of his ground floor flat in Heaton Street in Gainsborough with 17 photographs and posters.

Many were offensive – attacking both the prophet Mohammed and the Muslim religion.

Conway, 44, had denied displaying the religiously aggravated hate material on April 16 last year.

But he was convicted following a short trial earlier this year, when sentencing was postponed for reports to be prepared.

Judge Michael Heath told Conway: "To describe the material you put in your window as grossly offensive is an understatement.

"There is no place in a civilised society for conduct of that sort and the only sentence I can justify for it is an immediate custodial sentence."

Conway was also given a three-month concurrent jail sentence – to run alongside the longer term – after admitting unlawful production of cannabis.

Sixteen cannabis plants were found growing in his home when police visited to investigate the hate crime.

Christopher Lowe, prosecuting, said that Conway, who admitted to supporting both the BNP and the English Defence League, was caught after a member of the public complained to police.

"Later that day police attended the premises and found 17 posters and images

in the front window in full public view," said Mr Lowe.

"The majority of the displayed posters and images were undoubtedly offensive to the Islamic faith.

"Conway was arrested at the scene and taken into police custody.

"He appeared to make out that those posters were, more or less, an opportunity to get back at his landlord.

"He was trying to justify them on a political and religious basis.

"In the back room was found a small grow of cannabis plants. Sixteen plants were growing under heated lamps."

Tony Stanton, in mitigation, said Conway appeared to have displayed the material as part of an ongoing dispute with his landlord.

He said Conway had no history of similar offending and spent much of his time caring for his elderly father.

"His father has suffered multiple strokes and cannot get out," said Mr Stanton.

"This defendant involves himself in regular activity such as shopping for his father. That person would suffer should he lose his liberty."

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  • cigpapers  |  July 07 2012, 12:14PM

    I think if the British People had any backbone left we woudl all print up exactly the same posters and all put them up at exactly the same time and see if the judo- marxist totalitarian establishment can jail a whole Nation! VICTORY TO THE BRITISH PEOPLE!

    |   26
  • Studentman  |  March 17 2012, 9:36AM

    Public opinion?! I didn't realise that's what decides our justice. Since when was stirring up hate a celebrated thing to do. I'm ashamed at most of the posts here who are actually supporting this man's actions

    |   -27
  • Andy612  |  March 17 2012, 8:25AM

    Adrian1208 & Meklon If you truly believe what you say here I'd be really grateful if you both please emigrate - and take Luton with you.

    |   9
  • Gnome_Chomsky  |  March 16 2012, 11:14PM

    Meklon - His original defence was not to do with free speech, but that he had needed some papers to cover his windows, and these were purely coincidental as he had bought a new printer and run off these prints to test it. The images were of beheaded people and maimed corpses. I recently bought a new printer and the test pages consisted of bar codes and colour charts. I think he put these pictures up with the intent to cause offence. Does repetition of 'civilised society' make it so, or does murder of Afghan civilians with UK support suggest an alternative?

    |   -5
  • Mr_Sneer  |  March 15 2012, 11:01AM

    May I ask if the BNP/EDL shills think this is acceptable under their definition of freedom of speech? http://tinyurl.com/78f8el9

    |   -8
  • Stauffenberg  |  March 15 2012, 9:53AM

    "In order to find out exactly what the posters were (it's difficult to understnad the full implications of the case otherwise) I have just filed a Freedom of Information Request to the Crown Prosection Service good idea but dont hold your breath on that one You will have absolutely no chance of getting your hands on the stuff he posted freedom of information is as murky an area as freedom of speech the CPS will find some law on the lines of having this material in the public domain could effect the human rights and duty of care the prison service assures mr conway

    |   10
  • Mr_Sneer  |  March 15 2012, 8:59AM

    "Well worth the read" As are the comments from the fundamentalist Christians. The whole thing is a splendid argument in favour of a secular society. Good find.

    |   3
  • Epiphyte  |  March 15 2012, 7:48AM

    National Book Critics Award Circle nominee Bruce Bawer has written a very lucid critique of this arrest and more specifically, this article. Well worth the read: http://tinyurl.com/7ovw6c2

    |   4
  • EdgarDavidson  |  March 14 2012, 10:58PM

    In order to find out exactly what the posters were (it's difficult to understnad the full implications of the case otherwise) I have just filed a Freedom of Information Request to the Crown Prosection Service. See http://tinyurl.com/87s7ydz

    |   10
  • Gnome_Chomsky  |  March 14 2012, 10:41PM

    Andy612 - You stopped short of suggesting locking him in a box and throwing away the key, but that is a common theme in your posts. How much of our annual budget would you set aside for locking people up? This man made bizarre claims about buying a new printer to justify plastering his windows with extreme hate material. This was not a case about freedom of speech, or about disagreeing with Islam. This was sheer hatred and gross offence.

    |   -13