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Author Topic: Italy: It's legal to steal food if you're starving  (Read 817 times)

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Psk

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Italy: It's legal to steal food if you're starving
« on: May 04, 2016, 01:22:06 am »
Italy's top appeals court on Monday overturned a conviction against a homeless Ukrainian man who stole $4.50 worth of cheese and hot dogs from a supermarket because he was starving.

"The condition of the defendant and the circumstances in which the seizure of merchandise took place prove that he took possession of that small amount of food in the face of an immediate and essential need for nourishment, acting therefore in a state of necessity," the court said in a statement.

Ostriakov was convicted in 2015 and sentenced to six months in jail and a $115 fine before the conviction was overturned.

A fellow customer informed the store's security in 2011, when Mr Ostriakov attempted to leave a supermarket with two pieces of cheese and a packet of sausages in his pocket but paid only for breadsticks.

In times of economic hardship, the court of cassation's judgement reminds everyone that in a civilised country not even the worst of men should starve.

An opinion piece in Corriere Della Sera says statistics suggest 615 people are added to the ranks of the poor in Italy every day - it was "unthinkable that the law should not take note of reality".

It criticised the fact that a case concerning the taking of goods worth under €5 went through three rounds in the courts before being thrown out.

The "historic" ruling is "right and pertinent", said Italiaglobale.it - and derives from a concept that "informed the Western world for centuries - it is called humanity".



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