Feeds

Murder victim-mocking troll jailed

Judge said man 'derived pleasure' from hearing details of his crimes

The essential guide to IT transformation

The penalty for crossing the line online can be pretty severe – as internet troll Colm Coss discovered to his cost last week.

Mr Coss, 36, from Ardwick, was sentenced to 18 weeks in prison for persistently leaving vicious and hurtful messages on tribute sites for the deceased. Among his targets were a Facebook page for the late reality TV star Jade Goody, who fell victim to cancer last year, as well as sites dedicated to a dead baby in America, the victim of a fatal car crash in Australia and a Canadian murder victim.

According to reports in the local press, Mr Coss was said to have found the comments "amusing" . They gave him no sexual arousal but "he enjoyed the comments made in reaction".

Passing sentence, Magistrate Pauline Salisbury noted that Mr Coss had not expressed any regret for his actions and that he had even "derived pleasure" from hearing details of his crimes read out in court.

According to sentencing guidelines, the appropriate sentence would be 12 weeks in prison. However, Ms Salisbury felt that the seriousness of the offences required he serve 26 weeks, reduced to 18 weeks for his early guilty plea.

A request by the defence that there should be a further report into Coss' mental state before sentencing – on the ground that he "had a history of mental health issues" – was dismissed.

Mr Coss was sentenced under s127 of the Communications Act 2003, which makes it an offence to send messages that are "grossly offensive or of an indecent, obscene or menacing character".

Coss's identity became known when he circulated a leaflet to his neighbours boasting of his status as an "internet troll". ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
GCHQ protesters stick it to British spooks ... by drinking urine
Activists told NOT to snap pics of staff at the concrete doughnut
Britain's housing crisis: What are we going to do about it?
Rent control: Better than bombs at destroying housing
Top beak: UK privacy law may be reconsidered because of social media
Rise of Twitter etc creates 'enormous challenges'
What do you mean, I have to POST a PHYSICAL CHEQUE to get my gun licence?
Stop bitching about firearms fees - we need computerisation
Ex US cybersecurity czar guilty in child sex abuse website case
Health and Human Services IT security chief headed online to share vile images
We need less U.S. in our WWW – Euro digital chief Steelie Neelie
EC moves to shift status quo at Internet Governance Forum
Oz biz regulator discovers shared servers in EPIC FACEPALM
'Not aware' that one IP can hold more than one Website
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.