A financial adviser who aimed grossly offensive tweets at Muslims and Pakistanis was told he had “thinking deficiencies and old racist views”.
Ricky Lee Davies of St Thomas, Swansea, committed the Twitter offence after watching a television documentary about Muslim extremism.
Prosecutor Jonathan Coombs said Davies, who pleaded guilty to a charge under the 2003 Communications Act, told police he had wanted to get a reaction. Mr Coombs said: “He accepted his friends from ethnic minorities would not be too pleased, but that it was a bit of banter.” He said the messages concerned “would seem to be directed primarily at the Muslim community and Pakistani nationality”.
Defending, Dan Heard said his client had used extreme language but argued that its effect on recipients was minimal. People who responded to the tweets, he said, “referred to him as ‘silly boy’ and things of that nature”. He said the 20-year-old had no particular issue with any religion or race, and that his tweets had been in regard to extremism, terrorism and poppy-burning.
He said: “What he has tried – but monumentally failed – to do is to enter into a debate. He used ill-advised language and failed to articulate what might otherwise have been a proper debate. And that has effectively reduced itself to name-calling.”
Wales Probation officer Sharon Griffiths said Davies had let his anger get the better of him following the documentary. “He has made a concerted effort to increase his knowledge about other cultures,” she said.
Swansea Magistrates’ Court heard that Davies had a previous conviction when, as a juvenile, he referred to a man with a turban and beard outside Sainsbury’s as “bin Laden” during an altercation.
The defendant, of St Leger Crescent, was yesterday handed an eight-week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months, with a supervision requirement for 12 months. He was also told to do 150 hours of unpaid work and pay £85 costs.
Chairwoman of the bench Chantal Patel said: “You clearly have thinking deficiencies and old racist views.”
As we have previously pointed out, Davies tweeted his enthusiastic support for the English Defence League and its leader Stephen Lennon, who he described as a “hero”.
The selection of vicious hate-filled comments that we identified from a quick trawl through Davies’ Twitter account demonstrates that the defence’s claim that he “had no particular issue with any religion or race” and his tweets “had been in regard to extremism, terrorism and poppy-burning” was an outright lie.
Davies expressed his relief at escaping a prison sentence in the following tweet: