DCSIMG

Facebook rape comment restaurant worker jailed

Venditti was jailed for 60 days. File photo: Getty

Venditti was jailed for 60 days. File photo: Getty

  • by VIC RODRICK AND ALAN McEWEN
 

A SACKED restaurant worker who admitted posting Facebook messages urging people to rape his ex-boss’s daughter has been jailed for 60 days.

Tonino Venditti also incited others to go to restaurant director Dario Bianchini’s home and steal all his belongings.

Venditti admitted committing the offence at his home in Whitburn, West Lothian, on August 1 last year.

Livingston Sheriff Court heard that 65-year-old Mr Bianchini, of Broxburn, West Lothian, was told about the abusive messages while he was in Italy on business.

Prosecutor Kate Hart said that when the pensioner viewed the message, he found it “disturbing and alarming”.

Ms Hart said: “This led him to contact his daughter, Roberta, stating that he was especially concerned for his youngest daughter, Katerina, as he knew she was alone at their home address.”

Facebook moderators told him they would delete the Italian language posts on the Amici de Villa Latina group page, which is for people from his home village.

But Ms Hart said Roberta found a second message in broken English on Venditti’s own Facebook page and took photographs of both messages.

The English message read: “For all my friend here in West Lothian, I just want you to know I’m upset for my ex boss at work as am piece s***.

“He just left me in trouble. I must leave the house and he said about Westlothian is pure s**** and all b*******.

“I’m witness when he sayd that – he made a lesson.”

Ms Hart said the accused had been friends with Mr Bianchini for about four years before the incident, and had met his daughters on numerous occasions.

Venditti, 42, worked as a porter for the restaurant boss’s import and export company, which shipped furniture and other goods between Scotland and Italy.

But the pair fell out after Venditti failed to meet Mr Bianchini in Italy to travel back to Scotland.

Venditti, who pleaded guilty to breach of the peace at an earlier hearing, appeared for sentencing yesterday.

Alan Jackson, defending, said his client had been angry because he believed his ex-boss owed him £2000 in unpaid wages.

Mr Jackson said: “Because he wasn’t being paid he wasn’t able to pay his rent and his housing was in jeopardy.

“He accepts that these messages were offensive in the extreme, but it was somebody letting off steam, extremely aggrieved at being wronged.”

Jailing Venditti for 60 days yesterday, Sheriff Martin Edington told him: “It’s hard to imagine a much nastier incitement.

“Having admitted it to the police, your solicitor and the court you now seek to deny it because you now fear the consequences of your actions – that position does you little credit.

“From the report, it seems to me you offend against people who upset you.

“This is your third offence since 2007 here in Scotland and you abuse illegal drugs daily.

“I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the internet generally, and all the social networking sites, are incredibly colourful tools.

“But with power comes responsibility. You’ve abused this power and have done so in a particularly nasty way.

“I take the view that – in the public interest – only a custodial sentence will suffice. You will, therefore, go to prison.”

 
 
 

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