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'Out of control' crime spree youths caught

The teengaers appeared at Canterbury Crown Court
The teengaers appeared at Canterbury Crown Court

TWO youths aged 15 and 16 who committed a string of offences in a Kent city centre, have been given two-year detention and training orders.

The pair, both from Canterbury, were said by sentencing Judge Adele Williams to have been completely out of control, abusing their bodies and minds with alcohol and cannabis and to have viewed their victims not as people, but as a means to get money, excitement and to show off to friends.

Between them the two - who cannot be identified for legal reasons - admitted robbery, attempted robbery, and theft with the younger boy also admitting domestic burglary in Herne Bay.

All the crimes were committed in Canterbury. In May, they had stolen a schoolgirl's bag, attacked a student punching and kicking him as they tried to steal his bag and robbed a Japanese tourist of his rucksack.

The older youth had shown the victim a knife which the tourist grabbed fearing he would be stabbed. He suffered a cut hand that needed about a dozen stitches.

Another victim was robbed of his iPod, mobile and cash and subjected to embarrassing questions when the 15-year-old found a picture of his girlfriend in his wallet.

Lawyers for both youths said they were remorseful and had since, in the older boy's case taken GCSEs, joined a church and a football team.

The younger boy was said to have had difficulties at home and school but had used his time in custody positively and hoped for a career in catering.

At Canterbury Crown Court, Judge Williams said such offences would not be tolerated and the message had to go out that such street violence would be punished severely.

Police say the offences were escalating in seriousness and would have continued had they not been arrested.

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