from tabloid News
A magistrate who branded two boys 'absolute scum' after they desecrated a cathedral faces disciplinary action.
The 16-year-old boys wrote racist and sexually-abusive graffiti in prayer books, and bent a priceless John The Baptist cross out of shape at Blackburn Cathedral, causing £3,000 damage.
Pages were also torn out of the prayer books and insults written in the prayer and visitor books included: 'I will kill all Jews. Don’t underestimate me', and lurid sexual comments about ‘the vicar'.
They were caught after they wrote their names in the visitors' book.
Chairman of the bench at Blackburn Magistrates' Court Austin Molloy labelled the boys 'absolute scum' during the sentencing yesterday at the Youth Court.
But he was immediately criticised by the court clerk who stood up and objected to the use of the 'inappropriate language'.
The mother of one of the boys said she would be making an official complaint.
Last month at Blackburn Magistrates' Court, Boy A pleaded guilty to damaging the cross, and Boy B to defacing and damaging the books following the incident last October.
Boy A was given an 18-month supervision order and a £1,500 fine, while Boy B was given a 12-month supervision order and a £100 fine after pleading guilty to defacing and damaging the books.
Magistrate Austin Molloy told them: 'This court is disgusted by the mindless destruction you have caused.
'Normal people would consider you absolute scum.
'If it was in our power, we would have you both stand in front of the congregation at 10am on Sunday and explain your words and actions to them to see if they could understand it, because we can't.'
Christine Dean, clerk of the court, stood and told the magistrate: 'It is totally inappropriate and unjust for you to use the term "absolute scum" in the youth court.'
The mother of Boy B also objected and said she would complain through official channels.
The boys, who are both from Darwen, carried out the attack after following a group into the cathedral one afternoon out of curiosity.
After the hearing last month, Police Constable Dave Hall said: 'They are both stupid teenage boys. It's possible they've no issues with Jewish people and are just uneducated.
'Because their names were written down, we assumed that was a lead, and compared their photos on the system to the CCTV. They were known to us.
'You kind of think that sort of place is exempt from these types of actions.'
The teenagers had been welcomed in by Canon Andrew Hindley, who asked them about their local churches.
In accordance with the cathedral's open door policy, Canon Hindley then left them to walk in alone, but asked the cathedral warden Jeff Robinson to watch them.
Mr Robinson saw the boys huddled over the visitors' book and on asking them what they were doing he received 'only grunts' before they walked away.
Canon Hindley said: 'We welcome young people into the cathedral and it is upsetting that they have behaved in such a disgraceful manner.
'The open door policy was abused and there was a breach of trust.'
Solicitors representing the boys said they were remorseful for the unpremeditated and immature acts.
A spokesperson for the Judicial Communications Office said: 'We do not comment on the sentencing remarks of magistrates, nor on advice given to the Bench by their legal adviser.
'If a formal complaint is received about the conduct of the magistrate in question it would be a matter for the local Advisory Committee to consider and, if necessary, the matter would be referred to the Office for Judicial Complaints.'