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Time and time again a person apparently of good standing commits a crime and they are referred to as being good prior to their crime.
Somehow it makes it less of a crime that a shit from an estate had committed the same crime
Pleas in mitigation are always pretty lame, but particularly so for
serious crimes like this.
For a minor crime like shoplifting, the main purpose of punishment is to
deter people from doing it again (and to deter others). For that
purpose, a first offender should be treated more leniently than a
For more serious offences, the punishment also serves to express
society's disapproval of the offence, which could/should be even greater
for someone of (previous) good character and certainly for someone who,
as here, has abused a position of trust.
I'm not saying that society doesn't disapprove of shoplifting, but
there's clearly a massive difference between that and rape.