Italian media reported on Tuesday that the Ukranian Roman Ostriakov was caught in 2011 pocketing €4.07 ($4.50) worth of food in a supermarket in Genoa after a customer spotted him and later reported him to a member of staff.
Ostriakov was sentenced to six months in prison and ordered to pay a €100 fine back in February 2015, but the verdict was appealed on grounds that he had been stopped before he had actually left the supermarket, and at a second appeal, Italy’s court of cassation acquitted him.
“The condition of the accused and the circumstances in which he obtained the merchandise show that he had taken the little amount of food he needed to overcome his immediate and essential requirement for nourishment, acting therefore in a state of necessity,” the court said in a statement.
Also, the court said that people should not be punished if, forced by need, they steal small quantities of food in order to meet the basic requirement of feeding themselves. So stealing small quantities of food to satisfy a vital need for food did not constitute a crime in Italy.
Poverty on Italy
Since 2015, more than one in four Italians lived at or near the poverty level, as unemployment lingered around 13 percent, according to reports from the humanitarian organization Caritas Europa.
In 2013, the statistics agency ISTAT showed that relative poverty in Italy, which is defined as a family of two living on about $1,139 a month, was at 12.7 percent. This was the highest level since the agency began tracking the data in 1997. Also according to the Corriere Della Sera newspaper, 615 Italians are added “to the ranks of the poor” every day.
No one should be allowed to die of hunger
If we compare this with the United States, we could find that Italians treats hunger in their country in a humanitarian way. Back in 2014, about 31 citizens from Fort Lauderdale had restricted to feed homeless people.
Those regulations on Fort Lauderdale, FL. prohibit organizations from feeding the homeless outside within 500 feet of each other, allowing for only one such station per city block, and stipulate that any feeding operations must be 500 feet away from residential properties. Whoever violates this law must face with 60 days in jail and a $500 fine, which was the case of a 90 years old man who shared his food with a homeless.
Source: The Guardian