Chail, from Hampshire, informed a guard when he was committing the crime that he was “right here to kill” the late monarch. He additionally admitted making threats to kill and possessing the loaded weapon within the fortress.
The 21-year-old, who admitted breaking the Treason Act when he broke into the royal residence on Christmas Day in 2021, is the primary particular person to be convicted of treason since 1981.
As a part of a hybrid order underneath the Psychological Well being Act, he will probably be held in a psychiatric hospital till he receives the required therapy earlier than being transferred to custody.
However what does that imply?
What’s the Treason Act?
Whereas Chail has turn into the primary particular person in 43 years to be convicted of treason, the act has an extended historical past.
In actual fact, the primary Treason Act of 1351 was established throughout the reign of King Edward III. It said that, in case you waged battle towards the king, tried to kill the monarch or their household, or aided an enemy, the crime could be punishable by loss of life. There have been two forms of treason recognized by the act: excessive treason is a betrayal towards the sovereign monarch whereas petty treason refers to disloyalty.
The Treason Act of 1842 has been up to date since its Medieval counterpart. It was first applied by Queen Victoria after somebody tried to shoot at her carriage whereas she travelled previous. Beneath the 1842 Treason Act, you’ll be able to’t assault a monarch or have a firearm or offensive weapon of their presence in case you intend to make use of it towards them.
The Treason Act nonetheless has its place in British regulation, solely with plenty of amendments through the years.
What was the punishment for treason?
In Medieval instances, these discovered responsible of treason might be hanged, drawn, and quartered, a grotesque type of execution that included numerous bloody tortures. If the ‘traitor’ was a girl, she could be burned on the stake as an alternative, as being hanged, drawn, and quartered was thought-about too “indecent” for ladies.
The general public might watch the spectacle and generally throw rotten meals. The heads of the folks convicted of the Treason Act would usually be displayed in distinguished locations, similar to on a spike on the Tower of London, as a warning to anybody contemplating excessive treason.
In modern-day Britain, such punishments now not exist. If an individual is convicted underneath the Treason Act at present, they’ll seemingly be imprisoned for no less than seven years.
Who was the final particular person to die underneath the Treason Act?
The final time somebody was executed was in 1946, when William Joyce, also called Lord Haw-Haw, confronted trial and was in the end discovered responsible of treason after he assisted Germany throughout the Second World Conflict by broadcasting Nazi propaganda. He was executed by hanging.