9/7/2006UK: Spy Technology Convicts Speed Camera Vigilante
Manchester, UK court sends speed camera vigilante to jail with sentence equal to that of a reckless driver who nearly killed two people.
Manchester, UK Minshull Street Crown Court sentenced Craig Moore, 28, to four months in jail Wednesday for using thermite to melt a speed camera on Mottram Road in Greater Manchester on August 14 at 11:54pm. Although the British government has long maintained that its network of speed cameras only photographs those who are committing crimes, it turns out that the device Moore destroyed was a "Watchman" camera that continuously records digital video on a hard drive. The device was not used for routine ticketing, but produced a flash to give the appearance that it was a normal ticketing camera.
The recorded video captured Moore driving up in a Ford Transit van belonging to Vita Rail, the company where he worked as a railway engineer. The van had been equipped with a satellite tracking device, which police tapped into to determine the van's precise location and show after arriving at the camera's location just before midnight on August 14 it returned to Doncaster outside Moore's residence.
"Speed camera vandalism is reaching epidemic proportions," said road safety activist Paul Smith of Safe Speed. "The only solution is to scrap the cameras. Apart from their total failure to deliver improved road safety, they push good people outside of the law every day of the week."
Moore's four month sentence matches the time served by "Prince" Naseem Hamed, a Muslim boxer who last May drove his $460,000 Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren at 90 MPH on the wrong side of the road into the VW Golf of Anthony Burgin. Burgin and his wife Clare suffered massive injuries, with Anthony Burgin suffering fractures in every major bone in his body. Hamed left his victims assuming they were dead.
View the speed camera's video of incident from ThisIsLondon