The other day Jack Straw released a very ill man from custody - one Ronnie Biggs, the best known of the gang in the crime that became known as 'The Great Train Robbery'. So did Straw do the right thing? Having thought about it a bit I would say no. Even now he is out Biggs will have a poor quality of life such is the state of his health and releasing him for what would seem to be a fairly short period before he dies is sending the wrong message in my opinion. I say this because he has really been taking the mickey out of our legal system and furthermore has displayed absolutely no contrition for his part in the robbery. So, sorry, I don't think we should feel sympathy for him.
It's fascinating that there have been far bigger hauls in subsequent robberies but that we barely remember these. I guess it was the enormity of 'The Great Train Robbery' relative to what had happened before that made it so noteworthy and the subsequent escape by Biggs and his keeping just ahead of attempts to extradite him have helped keep the event in the public eye. Any attempt though to make him some sort of folk hero is just plain silly; he's an unrepentant crook plain and simple.
On the subject of crime I notice that the threesome involved in the death of "Baby Peter" have been named and their photographs are out in the media. Unbeknown to me this information has been on the internet for some time apparently. So on the basis of the statement in the last sentence there is an argument I suppose that there is nothing wrong in displaying names and photos in the way just done. A couple of points here: having this stuff in the mainstream media means that these people could be very recognisable if, as, when they are let out. That means I suspect that there will be vigilantes out to get them - so we are looking at the possibility that they will be given new identities at the very least. As important I think is the fact I read that the mother has other children (was it four?). A greater likelihood of them being connected with their natural mother now the mother's identity is known would be a disservice to them surely.
Going back to the vigilante thing for a minute I understand that one very good reason for not acting on pleas to release the 'Moors Murderers' was that their lives could be under very grave risk so unspeakably horrendous were their crimes.