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article imageCrime and women in the UK capital, February 2013

By Alexander Baron     Feb 26, 2013 in Crime
London - The police have made two arrests in connection with an horrific acid attack on a young woman in London's East End, and a thug who attacked another young woman in the same area has been sentenced.
In November, street thug Michael Ayoade pleaded guilty to a pointless and quite violent attack on a young girl at Plaistow. Yesterday he was given a four year sentence by Judge Roger Chapple. This was not for one assault though but two; a year earlier he punched another girl unconscious in the same place.
The maximum sentence for actual bodily harm is seven years, so all things considered this was probably the lightest sentence he could have expected.
That may be good news, the half-good news is that detectives investigating the horrific acid attack on another woman in East London have now made two arrests. Naomi Oni was an attractive 20 year old; a before and after shot can be found here. In spite of her horrific injuries she appears to have suffered no damage to vital body parts like her eyes, and is now undergoing skin grafts which should be able to restore most of her good looks.
The suspects are a man and a woman, who have been bailed pending further inquiries, which is standard police procedure.
If the third of our featured damsels is in distress, unlike Naomi and Ayoade's victims, she has only herself to blame. Vicky Pryce is the former wife of former Government Minister Chris Huhne. Earlier this month, Mr Huhne pleaded guilty to perverting the course of justice in connection with a decade old speeding offence, and that after years of denial. As this offence consisted of a conspiracy between him and his then wife for her to take the rap, it leaves her in a rather uncomfortable position. She has decided not to deny the offence but to plead duress.
Duress is a perfectly valid defence for many offences in English law, though never for murder. A driver who flagrantly ignores the speed limit to rush a seriously injured person to hospital could plead duress, and under the circumstances would probably not even be charged. But the sort of duress Miss Pryce has pleaded is, rather unusual, to say the least.
It may have been this which led to the jury being unable to reach a verdict. Unfortunately for Miss Pryce, the judge did not simply discharge the jury, he ordered a retrial, which began yesterday at Southwark Crown Court.
If she is convicted she will almost certainly face gaol time. Whether or not she is, when her trial is over, her ex-husband will be sentenced, and he will definitely face time, but the real punishment for Chris Huhne is not sewing mailbags at Her Majesty's Pleasure, but the ending of his political career and the trashing of his reputation over an offence that was so trivial that it is not even considered a crime.
More about michael ayoade, actual bodily harm, naomi oni, vicky pryce, victoria pryce
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