London

Fathers4Justice man jailed for defacing Queen portrait

The Coronation Theatre, Westminster Abbey: A Portrait of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, 2012, by Ralph Heimans (detail) Image copyright PA
Image caption The portrait of the Queen was unveiled for the Diamond Jubilee celebrations

A Fathers4Justice campaigner has been jailed for six months for defacing a portrait of the Queen with paint.

Tim Haries, 42, of Bellis Avenue, Doncaster, told jurors he vandalised the picture to highlight the "social justice issue of our time".

He smuggled purple spray paint into Westminster Abbey on June 13 last year and wrote the word "help" on it.

He had denied causing criminal damage of more than £5,000 but was found guilty at Southwark Crown Court.

Image copyright AFP
Image caption Tim Haries decided to represent himself in court

The painting is worth £160,000.

Recorder of Westminster, Judge Alistair McCreath, told him: "This was a deliberate and planned causing of damage to a valuable item of property on public display, carried out as a publicity exercise."

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