Hard labour punishment for Britons

#1
Sometimes, we forget what it means to live in a free society.

http://uk.news.yahoo.com/4/20081230/twl-hard-labour-punishment-for-britons-41f21e0.html

[align=justify]David and Fiona Fulton were arrested last month in the West African country after allegedly sending a letter to individuals and groups criticising Gambia's government.

The pair pleaded guilty and were sentenced and also fined £6,250 each.

Mr Fulton, 60, worked as a chaplain in the Gambian army and his wife, 46, looked after terminally ill people and visited women in their homes and in hospital.

The pair were arrested at their home in Kerr Sering, an hour's drive from Banjul in the African bush.

"We are seeking clarity as to what hard labour means in this context. It is a decision for the Fultons with their legal representative as to whether they appeal this judgement or not," a spokesman for the Foreign Office said.

"Mr and Mrs Fulton have not raised any concerns over their welfare with us. Consular staff in the Gambia will continue to visit Mr and Mrs Fulton whilst they are being detained.

"If Mr or Mrs Fulton raise concerns over their treatment, we can take these up with the relevant authorities."

Mr Fulton, a former British Army major originally from Troon, Scotland, and Mrs Fulton, originally from Torquay, Devon, were arrested on November 29.

The pair were held separately following their arrests and were not granted bail.

Mr Fulton was detained at high-security Mile Two prison outside the capital Banjul. It is described as a "tough" former colonial jail built during the days of the British Empire.

Mrs Fulton was held with their two-year-old adopted daughter Elizabeth at a police station in the capital.

A spokesman for the Foreign Office said consular staff in Gambia checked the welfare of the Fultons' daughter.

He said: "At no point was she under arrest. She was being kept with Mrs Fulton at Mrs Fulton's request. Mrs Fulton made alternative arrangements for her and she is being cared for by a family friend in the family home.

"It will be a decision for the Fultons to make about who should now care for their children. We will help to ensure they have the information they need to make this decision."

Gambia is a former British colony and has been ruled by the same regime after Yahya Jammeh claimed presidency following a military coup in 1994.

The president's record on human rights and civil freedoms has been questioned after a crackdown on government critics.[/align]
 
#3
Gee... I wonder if sentences of tough labor would be usefull to curb criminal recitivism at home?
 
#4
If he's worked for a state institution like the Gambian Army then he really ought to have had an idea that being openly critical of an oppressive ruling regime and spreading dissent probably wasn't the best idea; especially when that regime seized power in a coup, suspended the country's constitution and passed laws heavily restricting press freedom and allowing imprisonment for criticising the government. I'm also guessing that as a chaplain, he's a practicing Christian- in a country where Islam is the majority (90%) religion. All in all, he should have been aware that especially under this combination of circumstances, by committing acts of sedition he was hardly likely to make himself the most popular chap in West Africa. Sure his motives were probably extremely admirable, but he really should have known better and his new surroundings can hardly come as a surprise.
 
#6
I can't speak from personal experience like yourself and am just going from what I've read, so I'll bow to that. I just get the impression that however nice the people there are, how strict or not the religion is there, or how good British relations with the country are, a Christian preacher in an mainly Muslim country spreading critical material about a Government that has seized power by force and legislated to restrict exactly that kind criticism isn't showing a great deal of common sense. It's definitely a bit odd though as you pointed out having a British Christian Chaplain for such a small military- not even 2000 by the looks of things.
 
#7
No sympathy whatsoever. If you go and work/live in these countries, whether you agree with them or not, you have to follow their rules. Just a shame the the incomers to this country don't follow our rules and try and impose theirs on us.
 
#9
Mutts said:
If he's worked for a state institution like the Gambian Army then he really ought to have had an idea that being openly critical of an oppressive ruling regime and spreading dissent probably wasn't the best idea; especially when that regime seized power in a coup, suspended the country's constitution and passed laws heavily restricting press freedom and allowing imprisonment for criticising the government. I'm also guessing that as a chaplain, he's a practicing Christian- in a country where Islam is the majority (90%) religion. All in all, he should have been aware that especially under this combination of circumstances, by committing acts of sedition he was hardly likely to make himself the most popular chap in West Africa. Sure his motives were probably extremely admirable, but he really should have known better and his new surroundings can hardly come as a surprise.
Its the ridiculous naivety that infects people when they "Get" religion, no matter what their background or experience

12 months hard labour will keep em fit and of course, they have their God looking after them

Life is hard especially when you mislay your common sense in a less than "Fair" country
 
#10
I am extremely disappointed.

I thought that the title of this thread was announcing a change in policy that meant that the comfily housed shitheads in our jails were going to be put to work.

Balls.
 
#11
thegimp said:
Its the ridiculous naivety that infects people when they "Get" religion, no matter what their background or experience

12 months hard labour will keep em fit and of course, they have their God looking after them

Life is hard especially when you mislay your common sense in a less than "Fair" country
Very true, they never seem to learn from the fools that have gone before them thinking their blind faith will keep them safe only to find themselves well and truly in the shit, or very dead indeed. Your God hasn't forsaken you, chaps, your common sense has. In extremis you end up with utter fools like Norman Kember- these two won't be the last either, I'm sure.
 
#12
Mutts said:
thegimp said:
Its the ridiculous naivety that infects people when they "Get" religion, no matter what their background or experience

12 months hard labour will keep em fit and of course, they have their God looking after them

Life is hard especially when you mislay your common sense in a less than "Fair" country
Very true, they never seem to learn from the fools that have gone before them thinking their blind faith will keep them safe only to find themselves well and truly in the s***, or very dead indeed. Your God hasn't forsaken you, chaps, your common sense has. In extremis you end up with utter fools like Norman Kember- these two won't be the last either, I'm sure.

According to later reports, he got his faith while serving time for armed robbery-seems his wife met him when she was a prison visitor.

I'm all for rehabilitation but these aren't your average missionaries.

I don't think they deserve to be in the situation they are now in but something doesn't sound quite right here.

The Fultons
 
#13
dundrillin said:
http://uk.news.yahoo.com/4/20081230/twl-hard-labour-punishment-for-britons-41f21e0.html

[align=justify]Mr Fulton, a former British Army major ...
[/align]
Perhaps not.

Walter Mitty martyrs? The dark, strange truth behind a couple of British missionaries in Africa


But two biographical details have been repeated as fact in all press reports on Mr Fulton since his arrest.

The first is that he had been an Army officer and risen to the rank of Major. The second - made all the more remarkable by the first - is that after leaving the military he embarked on an armed robbery spree which led to his imprisonment.

But contemporary newspaper accounts of this remarkable and unexplained rise and fall are conspicuous by their absence.

Nobody of Fulton's name and seniority appears on the Army Lists - the annual directories of serving officers - during the relevant period.
 
#15
'It seems I am no longer allowed to tell a Muslim in the armed forces that they are going to hell and that the Christian faith through Jesus Christ is the only way to salvation and heaven.'
I think he's joined the wrong church, perhaps this one http://baptistsforbrown2008.wordpress.com/ would be more suited to him judging by his comments.
 

the_boy_syrup

LE
Book Reviewer
#16
johnboyzzz said:
No sympathy whatsoever. If you go and work/live in these countries, whether you agree with them or not, you have to follow their rules. Just a shame the the incomers to this country don't follow our rules and try and impose theirs on us.
Totally agree it's like the people who go to live and work in Saudi or Dubai and then cry because their hosts get upset when they are pished and shagging on the beaches
 
#17
Only 1 year hard labour? No sympathy from this call sign.
A lovely couple by all accounts. He is an uber walt who claimed to be an ex Army Major but has never served. She met him whilst he was in prison in the UK and she was employed as a prison social worker or similar. It seems she was also impregnated by a Gambian soldier during the course of her "missionary work" :) and tried to cover it up by saying the child had been adopted by the couple.
Not exactly the type who can take the moral high-ground.
Some Gambian hard labour wouldn't go amiss in this country for certain sections of the community!
 

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