Four members of the prank channel Trollstation have become only the latest YouTubers to go to jail. Daniel Jarvis, 27, Helder Gomes, 23, Endrit Ferizolli, 20, and Ebenezer Mensah, 29 were all sentenced to prison on Monday in London, pleading guilty to two counts of using threatening, abusive, or insulting words or behavior with intent to provoke unlawful violence. The group was involved in a fake robbery at London’s National Portrait Gallery and a fake kidnapping at Tate Britain in July 2015. The pranks caused crowds of people to rush out of the galleries, fearing for their lives. Robert Short, of the Crown Prosecution Service (aka: a British detective), explained of the convictions, “The hoaxes may have seemed harmless to them, but they caused genuine distress to a number of members of the public, who should be able to go about their daily business without being put in fear in this way.” London has been the target of real terrorism in the past, so it’s not really a surprise that the police would come down hard on a prank that makes people feel like they might be senselessly injured or killed.
Their sentences range from 16 to 20 weeks jail time, which is a pretty easy deal considering how much terror their “pranks” actually caused unsuspecting civilians, especially in a time where ISIS is out there actually trying to randomly kill people… :/
As for the future of their YouTube channel with over 700k subscribers, a member of the group known as “Light” said he expects it to continue, though they will “re-evaluate” their approach. “Our aim was never to get away with breaking the law. We are a big influence and we try to use that positively,” Light explained to the BBC earlier this year. Yeahhhhh, hopefully that “re-evaluation” won’t involve forcing people to run for their lives…
Do you think these guys should be in prison, or do you think pranks should always be allowed?