Robber is sentenced to reading lessons

11th May 2001 at 01:00

A young robber has escaped a punitive sentence after he satisfied a judge that he had learned to read and write.

Such enlightened sentences are likely to become more common in Spain following the introduction of a Children's Act that promotes innovative treatment of child delinquents.

Judges are being encouraged to make use of new measures such as requiring children to attend school or training courses.

The boy of 15 had been persuaded by an adult and another habitual offender to join them in the robbery of a food store in Granada.

But juge Emilio Calatayud said the boy was "a victim of society": "One cannot punish someone who has never had the most basic education," he said.

The judge agreed with the boy that he would attend a bricklaying course in the mornings and a basic skills course in the afternoon.

After six months' studying, the youth appeared nervous when he successfully read a story and did sums in front of the judge this week.

His teacher told the court that the boy had become particularly interested in reading and was determined to continue studying in the future.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today