Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

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Ansie
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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by Ansie » Thu Feb 03, 2011 7:30 am

@Danny Pinkas, yes you are right, Neil is quite a proactive guy and he deserves a thumbs up.
@ Paul Goddard, I don't know who you are and you obviously do not know me, so I wont take your insulting comments to heart.
@ Brian, of course I read the posts, I think you are missing my point.

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emile
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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by emile » Thu Feb 03, 2011 8:23 am

Regarding the alternate access points suggested in this thread: PLEASE DO NOT USE THEM. No parking & walking in from Tan' Malie's. No parking and walking in from the zoo & shops side.

Last night the owners repeatedly asked that we use only the gated entrance at the road (R512) / picnic site, I think respecting this request this is the very least we can do from our side. Neil has a good plan in the making, I'm sure he'll post it up as soon as possible.

Thanks to Neil for the effort in organising all this, and the landowners for their willingness to share the space with us.

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Neil
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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by Neil » Thu Feb 03, 2011 8:46 am

The Choss meeting went down well. We would like to thank the owners of Rissik Estates and especially Mr Jan Bezuidenhoudt for making the trouble to come address the group. It was very welcoming to see land owners interacting with climbers and working together to solve the problem. Thanks also to all who were there and those who put their names down to help.

Essentially conclusions were: To set up a system where we park by the gate where Elvis can watch the cars and build a new path which will be properly designed and contours as opposed to straight up the hill. This will cross the canal near the gate and contour up to Harry Potter and on up to Lord of the Rings. Thus the bridges and planks across the canal will be removed and the canal will be a deterrent/barrier to protect climbers up at the crags. Then we plan to offer a few trustworthy members of the community employment to walk up with climbers. Equip them with radios linked with an armed response company. These guides/guards will also police those who have not paid and come in via other points. There was also other community interaction planned such as University groups taking groups of local school kids climbing there. The place will be open on weekends only and the guards will set off at set times such as 8:00, 8:30, 9:00, 9:30 and 10:00. If any climbers wish to climb during the week, or other times there will be a cell no made available to contact and get a personal guard but it will cost more. This will be funded by charging a fee per guarded group so that there is an incentive to go in larger groups. Other funding will possibly be from the entrance fee, MCSA and climbers donations.

The owners of Rissik Estates agreed to meet in a few weeks at the venue to plan in detail the implementation of the solution outlined above. You will be notifies as to where and when, and whoever else in addition to those who put their names down who would also like to help are encouraged to be there.

Neil Margetts

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by RockRay » Thu Feb 03, 2011 9:18 am

WOW well done sounds great!!!! Will I be able to add my name to the list of people willing to help as it wasn't possible for me to have been there yesterday but would still like to do to my bit for the climbing community thanx for the good work keep it up :afro:

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by Ansie » Thu Feb 03, 2011 12:11 pm

That sounds like some very practical and feasible solutions. Thanks Niel for getting everyone together. I was starting to worry that an angry mob of climbers armed with knives, pangas and pepper spray are going to use violence to "get our crag back", but it seems that you guys came up with a more civil solution. Now the only remaining problems are: getting rid of poverty, changing the way our society works, finding the gene that make a person more susceptible to criminal behavior and removing it from our genetic make-up... ;-) If anyone has some ideas, mail me and we can organize a revolution.

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Justin
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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by Justin » Thu Feb 03, 2011 1:10 pm

Ansie wrote:getting rid of poverty, changing the way our society works, finding the gene that make a person more susceptible to criminal behaviour and removing it from our genetic make-up... ;-) If anyone has some ideas...
Ansie, I suggest a Beauty pageant sponsored by the 'World Peace' campaign :jocolor:

Nice one Neil, sounds like it was a constructive and useful meeting.
As a matter of interest, how many climbers attended the meeting?
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wesleywt
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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by wesleywt » Thu Feb 03, 2011 1:35 pm

Sorry Ansie. If poverty caused crime then most of Africa would murderous and crime ridden. It is not. Get rid of TV violence I'd say.

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by brianweaver » Thu Feb 03, 2011 5:58 pm

Arrg. There goes the neighourhood. Chosspile was one of the few places that I could go any day of the week, meet up with someone like Andrew, project a line and go home with minimal headaches/budgetary requirements. With it only being 92km roundtrip, I enjoyed going there as it only cost me R60. I have never paid for parking as that route of access takes significantly longer to walk up to the only area that I'm interested in (and this is the case for a lot of the stronger climbers).

I know that I wasn't at the meeting so I don't get to really have an opinion, but I would like to note that they tried something like this at the wavecave and it still didn't work 100%. I'm seriously not going to pay to be escorted up the crag. I don't carry a wallet or a phone and recently not even keys up to the crag. You guys can say whatever you want to me, you can rag on me, feel free to do so, but I'll either not go to the crag (which I think will be the case for a lot of people that I know) or I'll walk up from Tan Malies like I've been doing for the last 5 years.
I hate this real world place... I'd be more than happy to live out there rather...

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by 9ja » Thu Feb 03, 2011 7:02 pm

Well yes, exactly. most of the best climbing at Choss is at the Lord Of the Rings area. I suspect a lot of people will stop going to climb there now as the walk in from the proposed new path is really long. How much is it to park down below btw? How much will it be to have these guards there? Do the muggers also have to stop using the myriad of paths into the area since there isn't a fence around this private land?

@Ansi, I'd suggest you fire off an email to Bono about this issue and he and Opera will sort it out. (bono@u2.com)

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by Old Smelly » Thu Feb 03, 2011 9:32 pm

Well said Brian weaver...you may be one of the harder climbers...in the hearing department...

The fact that you have trespassed on someone's else land for years because it was a cheap climb for you does not make your approach correct or honorable :oops: in fact quite the opposite...you are obviously a strong climber & yet you have allowed beginners & weaker climbers to fund your legitimacy...otherwise you would have been found out years ago!

Let me put this point in the monosyllables you can understand:

You cannot continue in the way you have done things, there is a negotiated agreement with the landowner & if you do not agree to it then you will be trespassing. No climber who understands access issues will support you at all - they will turn you in themselves so that they do not lose access - it's that simple. It's logical & the only way forward. This negotiated agreement will not be jeopardised by a few selfish cowboys.

If you cannot afford it regularly then go there less. Most Gauteng climbing venues cost something to enter & thats the way it goes.

We must not allow a few cheapskate misfits to screw this up for the climbing community as a whole...no matter how "good" they are :puker: :evil:
Really, its not that bad...I think it's my shoes...

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brianweaver
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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by brianweaver » Thu Feb 03, 2011 10:25 pm

I'm a student, I spend 50% of my annual income on cimbing. I can't afford to spend excessive amounts of money on access to a B grade crag with a few routes that are okay but none that are exceptional. What benefits do we get by paying R50 per car to park in a dodgy spot?
I hate this real world place... I'd be more than happy to live out there rather...

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by Forket » Thu Feb 03, 2011 11:53 pm

Wel said Brian, the rest of you are making an issue out of things that are n0t in y0ur p0wer to change. Harden y0ur climbing up a little, climb harder and go into the magaliesberg and climb at m0re beautiful, better climbs. You are all a bunch of girls that are g0na end up feeling insucure and reverting to y0ur trusted plastic. . . Leave chosspile for a few months -> muggers get bored and go away. The world is a sp0t to climb, yes this is sad l0osing an0ther crag to crime, but just like in boven, climbing moves away and comes back a few years later, natural progression. Lastly whats even m0re sad than l0osing a crag to crime, is a bunch of climbers arguing, undermining eachother and probably cant climb the grade. The climbing c0mminity in SA is smal, your comments are useless unless you take a stand. Get off the f0rum useless c0mmenting and go climb a r0ck...

-----
my grammer might not be as good as y0urs, but im sure my climbing is. . .

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by emile » Fri Feb 04, 2011 8:38 am

brianweaver wrote:What benefits do we get by paying R50 per car to park in a dodgy spot?
You'll get a secure spot with a guard backed up by armed response. I guess you'll want even more than that?
brianweaver wrote:I'm a student, I spend 50% of my annual income on cimbing. I can't afford to spend excessive amounts of money on access to a B grade crag with a few routes that are okay but none that are exceptional.
Then please do stay away rather than f#ck up the arrangement the rest of us is willing to honour. No one is forcing you to go climb there.

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by nozza » Fri Feb 04, 2011 9:02 am

Brian, I understand where you come from. I am from the Cape and I really miss having around crags with free entrance and a ten minute drive (which works out much cheaper on both money and time).

However, the Chosspile property (that is all the crags as well as all access trails) belong to the same landowner, and he wants people to access his land from a central point. This is very common practise with privately owned crags, and quite understandable I think. He does not do this for any financial gain. If we do not play by his rules he will simply shut down all climbing and continue living without the hassle. He has made this very clear to everyone at the meeting.

So in simple words: we can play by his rules or we can tresspass, endangering access for everyone. It sucks that that means a longer walk and more costs, but that's how it is and I am sure Neil is trying to keep cost at a minimum. If it doesn't suit us we'll just have to climb elsewhere.

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Justin
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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by Justin » Fri Feb 04, 2011 9:25 am

This is a message that I am trying to convey to climbers (in Montagu anyway). If we don't pay a little to use land, then we could pay big later on (i.e. no access at all).

I realise this is meant to be a 'cheap' sport (buy your gear and be free in the mountains), but its not that simple anymore!

For most land owners, climbers are the last thing they care for (why should they).

Scenario: Problem on land
Probable cause: Climbers
Solution: Remove climbers
Easy :thumleft:

Problem averted and the land owner doesn't have to waste anymore of his time with meetings about crime or climbing!
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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by mokganjetsi » Fri Feb 04, 2011 9:59 am

ja sometimes i think we do not need criminals the way we knife into each other on this forum :(

situations & solutions are rarely simple and perfect.
crime is a consequence of a number of things: poverty; values; blame (the whites took everything from us); hope (the lack of it); consequences (the lack of it); easy targets; etc etc. let's do the best we can to fix what is within our power to do so - which means both social engagement and safety measures. "evil prosper when good (wo)men do nothing."

complaining & whinging does not change a thing. :mrgreen:

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by BruceT » Fri Feb 04, 2011 10:43 am

Hi Brian.
I hear you.
Climbing is becoming expensive.
Wait will you see the petrol price coming next month...
I am not a student but have 3 kids.
We had a similar problem, process and outcome at Shongweni dam (includes wave cave, mag wall).
Now I can't afford to climb there anymore.
Umgeni valley outside Pmbg is outside my price range too...
However I don't whine about it, just don't go there...
Luckily we still have some free areas around Durban - so far relatively safe.
I surf more now... (beachfront upgrade is awsome)
C ya,
Bruce

Old Smelly
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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by Old Smelly » Fri Feb 04, 2011 12:28 pm

I fear I may have come across a little agressive...

Quite frankly I do not care what brian weaver & that other little sh*t think about the solution, my point was that they are not going to jeopardise this solution for everyone else because they selfishly think they can continue to trespass on this "B grade" crag as if it is their right.

Climbers need to have a bit more backbone. Neil has spent many hours of his time trying to come up with a solution - why? I dunno, probably not really for himself- he is probably arguably a better climber then these two little whingers - yes that's what you are- & he could probably better spend his time tradding some hard climbs you will never get to.

So why should we let these guys mess it up for the rest of us? Ok I see some of the other forum members have phrased a calmer, more rational sounding response but that was not my goal.

MY POINT WAS THAT YOUR ATTITUDE OF ENTITLEMENT TO A CHEAP CLIMB ON SOMEONE ELSES LAND IS WRONG!

I think it is best if you stop whinging a go find some free climbing for the rest of us...

To all the other readers sorry about the passive agressive approach (see my disclaimer below)
Really, its not that bad...I think it's my shoes...

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by proze » Fri Feb 04, 2011 1:03 pm

Dude, relax. You know BrianW has climbed 8a on gear, right? Don't start pissing contests you can't win... and stop mixing the issues.

Neil, thanks for the effort! No longer in GP, so I couldn't attend the meeting, but 2c: We always parked at the campsite, but on several occasions the guard just wasn't there. On others he had no clip-board or register and would just wander up and demand bucks. So I reckon for this new setup to work, it will have to be quite formal. If you are going to pay for safe access, then you must get safe access. Your car must actually be watched, etc. I reeeeally hope this can be worked out! It would be properly sad to lose that spot. Out of interest, what does the land-owner do with that land? Other than have a pretty non-functional campsite?

Edit: had another thought, and I know this is a little late, after the meeting and all: how about monthly memberships with cards? Like your boulder cave, Neil. That way people can park wherever they want to but are still contributing to the security.

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by Hector » Fri Feb 04, 2011 1:11 pm

Brian, the landowner stated his case very eloquently at the meeting on Wednesday. He is a citrus farmer, with his main farm being 4km up the road from choss. He is just an ordinary guy who, out of sheer goodwill, makes chosspile open to the public. He says he makes no money off it and I believe him (in fact I wouldn't be surprised if he makes a loss). Any attempt to stop the crime wave has to have an element of controlling who accesses the property. And unfortunately access control and policing cost money.
Personally I won't choose to go to a crag where I must be escorted by guards. But the good news is that if you drive another 10km west from choss there is a much better climbing spot. Its called Trident, has a 15 minute almost flat walk, and no crime issues. You know how to place gear: go find some new hard routes there. Or go explore any of the other 6 properties owned by the MCSA in the magaliesberg.

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by Old Smelly » Fri Feb 04, 2011 1:30 pm

You are quite right...I do not care how "good" someone with the wrong attitude is at climbing...nor is it relevant...

What we need is a correct approach to the problem & as someone else has already said the easiest solution for the landowner is actually to ban climbing on his land!

The farmer in question left us in no pains as to his interest in the climbing. He thought there were a dozen people who climbed there on occasion! He has no interest in making any money from the "picnic spot" as he put it & in fact had originally banned anyone from going onto the mountain. This is no money grubbing landlord but someone who lets people onto his land as a bit of a community service. Ok so we pay R50 per car or something like that, but his argument was that he does not have time or interest to sort this out.

So yes we need to figure out a solution that works practically but the last thing we need is some dissident a-holes who say they are just going to do what they want...the farmer is not even interested in what our solution is as long as it works, but if he has anymore trouble from us or any other quarter then one can bet he will put a ban on the place.

Maybe I need to chill...& maybe people who think that just because they can climb high grades means they can act like retards need to grow up a bit...

Maybe this is not about strength but about apptitude :shock:

Or maybe you get the message now & we can all chill
Really, its not that bad...I think it's my shoes...

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by 9ja » Fri Feb 04, 2011 1:59 pm

There always has to be some passive aggressive old bloke on forums. People are allowed opinions Old Smelly. It's certainly not relevant to make judgements about people's abilities. Hard climbers drive the whole industry forward, like it or not. Brian's point is valid, and understandable if you are a poor student who has limited funds to climb.

That said, it's cool that things have been sorted out, and that the landowner is trying to accommodate climbers on his land. I really don't think Choss is a 'B' grade crag btw. There are some awesome routes there. Take Fossil Fuel, Bully, Shortcut etc. I can think of many more classics.

I think play by the rules then from here on, see how it goes. Keep the dialogue open, let the landowner know of issues, invite him up there on a busy Saturday afternoon for some beers and let him see how much fun this place gives to people.

be cool

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by pillick » Fri Feb 04, 2011 2:30 pm

Very simple....

Thug + robbery = criminal

AND

Brian + trespassing = criminal

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by brianweaver » Fri Feb 04, 2011 8:04 pm

Pillic --> I think you're missing the point. You're simply being ridiculous. :jocolor: If logic like that still worked then we'd still be back in Ancient Greece.

Old Smelly --> I don't appreciate the level of rudeness that you exhibited with your outbursts. I was voicing an opinion, one that needed to be voiced as it is not mine alone. I can think of 15-20 other people who will share my opinion. I was never complaining about Neil, I hold him in the highest of regards and he knows this so your attack from that direction has no grounds. FYI, I'm in the process of opening new lines, my current one should be in the 32 range in Boven. I don't have a sense of entitlement, I pay to climb at a very large number of crags, including the majority of the MCSA owned venues.

Hector --> awesome, never heard of Trident, will be very keen to go there. When are you going to head there again? I also agree with your opinion about not going to a crag where I need an armed escort.

If this new system works, then fine, I'll pay the entrance fee. BUT to be blatantly honest, the only reason that I didn't pay previously was for fear that my car would either be broke into or missing upon my return. After the system can be tested and proven true, then I perhaps I'll consider going back to Chosspile. I get grumpy when I can't get in the climbing I need to. SO SUE ME.
I hate this real world place... I'd be more than happy to live out there rather...

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by andrew p » Sat Feb 05, 2011 9:34 am

I hear three reasons why people don't park at the official parking:

1. The parking is too expensive
2. The walk to Lord of the Rings is too long
3. The parking is not safe

Only the latter WAS a valid reason, the other two are are not....

50 bucks between 2-4 people is nothing, the same climbers complaining about this price are the ones who will spend 150 each on fuel for a Boven weekend or buy a pie and coke at the Harties garage for 20 bucks.

As for the walk being too long! That sort of comment gives sport climbers a bad name.

So, if it is now safe at the offcial parking, we MUST use it. To do otherwise is illegal and will undermine the whole plan.

All of this will gradually fizzle out anyway within a year or two.

Well done Neil.

Andrew

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by pillick » Mon Feb 07, 2011 9:06 am

Pillic --> I think you're missing the point. You're simply being ridiculous. If logic like that still worked then we'd still be back in Ancient Greece
I think your missing the point Brian. Your actions might just screw it up for many people. The fact that people disregard the LAW got us into this situation in the first place.
As a strong climber who is in the public eye, you can influence a lot of people, young and old, and I thought your statements are reckless, to say the least.

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by Ansie » Mon Feb 07, 2011 12:29 pm

I also have trespassed, mostly due to ignorance. For some reason I figured that that land is probably owned by the Town Council, cause its right next to the dam and nothing grows on it or grazes there and so on. I also never saw the point in parking by the picnic area partially for the same reasons as Brian, but also because when I started climbing my friends never parked there, so it became a bit of a habit to park by Tant Malie's. I don't think Chosspile is a "second rate crag", sure its not Boven, but its convenient to go there and my beginner friends can have ago at the easier routes while my experienced friends try the hard ones. So I suppose I will do the right thing from now on and park at the designated spot and pay my dues. It is ironic that we were all bitching and moaning about criminal activity at Chosspile while we were breaking the law ourselves.

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by mokganjetsi » Mon Feb 07, 2011 1:54 pm

ja gmf, the criminality between robbing somebody @ knifepoint & trespassing (without any harm) on a otherwise unused property is galaxies apart :roll: no direct comparison there, at all.

now you also break the law when driving 121km/h; talking on your cell when driving or watching TV without a licence - we should actually obey those laws; but most of us do not see it as criminal. btw, doesn't it miff you when some slick in his new 3-series puls-up on you at a 130km/h and starts to flash his headlights as if he's entitled to doing 150km/h??

but let's not cloud the issue - if the actions of a few endangers the access for the many i think it is criminal, at least in a climbing community context.

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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by pierre.joubert » Mon Feb 07, 2011 2:49 pm

moks wrote:btw, doesn't it miff you when some slick in his new 3-series puls-up on you at a 130km/h and starts to flash his headlights as if he's entitled to doing 150km/h??
O ja, I know those (often BMW) drivers. If I'm sitting in the right hand lane with no one in front of me, holding him up for no particular reason, I'll move out the way before he even needs to flash.
But if I'm in a long line of cars and the oke flashes, I take it as a clear sign that I'm going too fast for his liking. I oblige by climbing on the brakes, and acknowledging my mistake with my middle finger raised out the window. They get all excited, wave their arms, it's so nice to see!

pillick
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Re: Armed Robbery of three climbers at Chosspile

Post by pillick » Mon Feb 07, 2011 3:01 pm

the criminality between robbing somebody @ knifepoint & trespassing (without any harm) on a otherwise unused property is galaxies apart no direct comparison there, at all.
So in other words, stealing isn't a crime then Mok? By not accessing the property in the rightful manner you are stealing access fees from the owner of the land. Is a crime not a crime, regardless of which galaxy you are from? The reason this thread exists is because we have had enough of being the victims, but it doesn't help our cause if some of us feel that we do not have to play by the rules.

It is be allowing these "little" crimes, that our moral fibre gets distorted - who knows, in a couple of generations rape and piledge won't even lift an eyebrow....

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