The Reading / Listening - Level 5

An Italian court of appeal has said food theft because of hunger is not illegal. The Supreme Court of Cassation reversed the conviction of a homeless man, Roman Ostriakov, who was given six months in jail for stealing cheese and a sausage worth $4.50. He was also fined $115. His lawyers appealed for a reduction in that fine and got the whole conviction quashed. The court said taking the food, "does not constitute a crime" because he stole a small amount of food out of desperation. It ruled that stealing small amounts of food because of hunger is not a crime.



Many people hope this case will highlight the poverty and homelessness in Italy. They also believe it may mean hungry people who are arrested for shoplifting will not be convicted. A criminal lawyer said the case, "is a new principle", and it might lead to more, similar decisions when theft is "linked to poverty situations". The court said: "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." Italy's La Stampa newspaper said: "In a civilised country, no one should be allowed to die of hunger."

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Level 4 or  Level 6

Sources
  • http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Europe/2016/0504/Italian-court-rules-stealing-food-isn-t-a-crime-if-you-really-need-it
  • http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-36190557<,li>
  • http://www.thelocal.it/20160503/if-italys-poor-and-hungry-steal-food-its-not-a-crime-top-court


Make sure you try all of the online activities for this reading and listening - There are dictations, multiple choice, drag and drop activities, crosswords, hangman, flash cards, matching activities and a whole lot more. Please enjoy :-)



Phrase Matching

Paragraph 1

  1. An Italian court of
  2. reversed the conviction of
  3. cheese and a sausage
  4. He was also fined
  5. got the whole conviction
  6. taking the food does not constitute
  7. out of
  8. stealing small amounts
  1. this case will highlight
  2. arrested for
  3. A criminal
  4. it might lead to more, similar
  5. People should not be
  6. meet the basic
  7. In a civilised
  8. no one should be allowed

Paragraph 2

  1. this case will highlight
  2. arrested for
  3. A criminal
  4. it might lead to more, similar
  5. People should not be
  6. meet the basic
  7. In a civilised
  8. no one should be allowed
  1. shoplifting
  2. decisions
  3. to die of hunger
  4. requirement
  5. the poverty
  6. country
  7. punished
  8. lawyer

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

An Italian court of (1) ___________________ food theft because of hunger is not illegal. The Supreme Court of Cassation reversed (2) ___________________ a homeless man, Roman Ostriakov, who was given six months in jail (3) ___________________ and a sausage worth $4.50. He was also fined $115. His lawyers appealed for (4) ___________________ that fine and got the whole conviction quashed. The court said taking the food, "does not (5) ___________________" because he stole a small amount of food out of desperation. It ruled that stealing small amounts of food because (6) ___________________ a crime.

Many people (7) ___________________ will highlight the poverty and homelessness in Italy. They also believe it may mean hungry people (8) ___________________ for shoplifting will not be convicted. A criminal lawyer said the case, "is a new principle", and it (9) ___________________ more, similar decisions when theft is "linked to (10) ___________________". The court said: "People should not be punished if, forced by need, they steal small quantities of food (11) ___________________ the basic requirement of feeding themselves." Italy's La Stampa newspaper said: "In a civilised country, no one should (12) ___________________ die of hunger."

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

AnItaliancourtofappealhassaidfoodtheftbecauseofhungerisnotillega
l.TheSupremeCourtofCassationreversedtheconvictionofahomeless
man,RomanOstriakov,whowasgivensixmonthsinjailforstealingchee
seandasausageworth$4.50.Hewasalsofined$115.Hislawyersappeal
edforareductioninthatfineandgotthewholeconvictionquashed.Theco
urtsaidtakingthefood,"doesnotconstituteacrime"becausehestoleas
mallamountoffoodoutofdesperation.Itruledthatstealingsmallamoun
tsoffoodbecauseofhungerisnotacrime.Manypeoplehopethiscasewill
highlightthepovertyandhomelessnessinItaly.Theyalsobelieveitmay
meanhungrypeoplewhoarearrestedforshopliftingwillnotbeconvicted
.Acriminallawyersaidthecase,"isanewprinciple",anditmightleadtom
ore,similardecisionswhentheftis"linkedtopovertysituations".Thecou
rtsaid:"Peopleshouldnotbepunishedif,forcedbyneed,theystealsmall
quantitiesoffoodinordertomeetthebasicrequirementoffeedingthems
elves."Italy'sLaStampanewspapersaid:"Inacivilisedcountry,noones
houldbeallowedtodieofhunger."

Student survey

Write five GOOD questions about this topic in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper. When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

(Please look at page 12 of the PDF to see a photocopiable example of this activity.)

Discussion — Write your own questions

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

(a) ________________

(b) ________________

(c) ________________

(d) ________________

(e) ________________

(f) ________________

(g) ________________

(h) ________________

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

(i) ________________

(j) ________________

(k) ________________

(l) ________________

(m) ________________

(n) ________________

(o) ________________

(p) ________________





Free writing

Write about this topic for 10 minutes. Comment on your partner’s paper.

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Answers

(Please check your answers against the article above.

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