Feminist campaigner tells of ‘terrifying’ ordeal as abusive Twitter trolls jailed

Move to get woman on Bank of England notes

 Isabella Sorley and John Nimmo who were jailed for subjecting Caroline Criado-Perez to online abuse following a campaign to ensure a woman featured on British bank notes. Photograph: Sean Dempsey/PA

Isabella Sorley and John Nimmo who were jailed for subjecting Caroline Criado-Perez to online abuse following a campaign to ensure a woman featured on British bank notes. Photograph: Sean Dempsey/PA

Sat, Jan 25, 2014, 01:00

Feminist campaigner Caroline Criado-Perez said she had been through a “terrifying and scarring” experience, after a man and a woman were jailed for sending her abusive messages on Twitter.

Isabella Sorley (23) and John Nimmo (25) bombarded her with rape and death threats last year after she led a successful campaign using social media for a female figure to appear on a Bank of England note.

Sorley, who according to her lawyer was also a “victim” of new technology, was jailed for 12 weeks, and “social recluse” Nimmo was jailed for eight weeks.

Judge Howard Riddle told them it was “hard to imagine more extreme threats”.

Ms Criado-Perez was subjected to fresh Twitter abuse after yesterday’s sentencing, which led to one user having their account suspended.

She did not attend the hearing at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London but said in a statement that “hearing the outcome has made me realise how tense and anxious I have been feeling”.

“I did not attend the sentencing as I didn’t feel I could cope with being in court with them – and I didn’t feel sure that the judge would understand how terrifying and scarring the whole experience has been for me, which again is not something I could face,” she said.

“I feel immensely relieved that the judge clearly has understood the severity of the impact this abuse has had on me.”