Hurrah, hurrah, hurrah for Henry Evans…
A former member of the Oxford University Conservative Association was caught carrying two knives as he attempted to deliver a petition to Nick Clegg in Downing Street.
Henry Evans said he had forgotten that the weapons were in his leather briefcase and dismissed the incident as a ‘terrible mistake’.
The 22-year-old was arrested but let off with a caution after just a few hours in the cells – prompting questions last night over whether he was given preferential treatment because of his privileged background.
The maximum jail sentence for anyone caught carrying a knife is now four years. Last year, the Conservative Party manifesto stated that carrying a knife was ‘totally unacceptable’ and even those convicted of possession should face jail.
Mr Evans was stopped when OUCA members went to No 10 Downing Street to deliver a petition to Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg asking for more help for Armed Forces families.
As the student, who was vice-president of the association, went through the metal detectors officials discovered the two knives.
He said yesterday: ‘I was absolutely horrified when I saw them. It was a terrifying experience because I have never been in trouble with the police before.
‘I explained to the police what happened and when it became apparent I wasn’t there to cause trouble they were polite and kind to me.
‘The CPS decided it wasn’t worth bringing a prosecution. But I’m kicking myself every day that I didn’t check that bag.’
Mr Evans said the knives were souvenirs he had bought during a school trip to France at the age of 11. He said he had no idea how they came to be in the bag.
The Metropolitan Police confirmed he was arrested at the scene of the incident, which happened on November 10 last year, for possession of an offensive weapon.
Several hours later he was bailed – and accepted a caution after charges were dropped.
The history student, who graduated from Corpus Christi College in the summer, is currently applying for a law conversion course.
He spent the autumn working as an intern for Tory MP Ben Gummer.
Joe Cooke, former president of OUCA, who witnessed the incident, said: ‘The only thing against him is that he’s an idiot.
‘Would the police have accepted his version of events had he been from a less privileged background – if he was from a minority or living on a council estate?’
Mr Evans is a former pupil of 23,000-a-year Tonbridge School. He lives at his parents’ £1.3million house in the village of Boughton Monchelsea in Kent. His mother, Elizabeth, 53, and father Andrew, 59, are both lawyers.
Oxford University declined to comment last night, while the CPS said: ‘Given that he co-operated fully with the police, admitted the offence in interview, had no previous convictions and offered excellent character references, it was not considered in the public interest to press charges.
Funny story on some levels and worrying on others…
The most obvious questions are: why carry two knives in the first place? And… not thinking to yourself, ‘I am going into 10-Downing Street, probably the most secure building in the country, I had better make sure I am not carrying anything dodgy…’
Another classic is the chair-person of the OUSA saying in not so many words, the Police are racist and class prejudice. He also said, ‘‘The only thing against him is that he’s an idiot’…yes…that and the two offensive weapons he was carrying into one of the most sensitive areas in the country…
What a knob.
I love the fact that lawyers and people that deal with legal matters, don’t seem to grasp the simple fact that the Police don’t mark charging decisions in cases like this…
Perhaps they are corporate lawyers? I mean criminal is soooo last year dahling…