Saturday, 27 September 2014

Timescales and Sexual Offences, an Update

The petition that I started here has now been going for about a month and a half, and now has nearly 400 signatures.
Hopefully all who have read my blog have signed it - if not WHY? - sign it now, it only takes a minute!
I have managed to find out the history of this disclosure timescale, and include this below.
A week or so ago, I had a reply from Mr Chown, head of Criminal Procedure at the Ministry of Justice, outlining where this 12 month limit originated. I will reproduce part of his e-mail below and elaborate a bit on this after:
"The time limit was of long standing, dating back to 1885; as Lord Bingham of Cornhill explained in the House of Lords case of R v J, it was originally shorter:
“Section 5 of the Criminal Law Amendment Act 1885 provided that no prosecution for an offence under subsection (1) (sexual intercourse with a girl aged between 13 and 16) should be commenced more than three months after the commission of the offence. Section 27 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Children Act 1904 increased the time limit to six months. Section 2 of the Criminal Law Amendment Act 1922 increased the period to nine months. Section 1 of the Criminal Law Amendment Act 1928 made a further increase to 12 months. That provision was consolidated in the 1956 Act.”
The time limit was finally abolished when the 1956 Act was replaced by the Sexual Offences Act 2003, but only prospectively, with effect from the date when that Act was brought into force in 2004.  In so legislating, Parliament followed the usual principle of non-retroactivity; Lord Steyn’s speech in R v J simply observed without further comment that “The change in the law is, of course, not of retrospective effect”.  Although retrospective removal of the time limit would not amount to substantive retroactivity in the sense of criminalising conduct that was not previously unlawful, it is clear that the bar to retroactive legislation also applies to fundamental procedural pre-conditions for the bringing of charges against an individual"
So, this goes back over 100 years to 1885!!
The original Law from 1885 itself an be read here and here (section 5) , and the bit that applies to this is "Provided also, that no prosecution shall de commenced for an offence under sub section one of this section more than 3 months after the commission of this offence".
I won't make this post too long, however, I will include a link that does explain further the reasons behind the original 3 month limit, and the reasons for raising it to 12 months. This link can be read here (it is rather long though) and includes the following 2 items:
"it was thought then that a girl who fell pregnant, and thus was unquestionably the victim of an offence, was so likely to name the wrong man that the accused needed the exceptional protection of a very short time limit, one which elapsed before her pregnancy had become obvious or even known" (this for the reasons of having the 3 month original timescale),
"it cannot long have been the supposed need to identify a perpetrator before a pregnancy became apparent, because the time limit was soon raised, first to six months by the Prevention of Cruelty to Children Act 1904, then to nine months by the Criminal Law Amendment Act 1922, and finally to 12 months by the Criminal Law Amendment Act 1928. It was precisely because a pregnancy or childbirth might reveal the offence that the limit was raised. The reasons given for having any limit at all - loss of witnesses and the difficulties of proof - might equally apply to many other offences. But complainants in sexual offences were then still regarded with much more suspicion than other complainants, and so abolition may have been thought too radical to contemplate. However, it is hard to discern any coherent rationale after 1922, because the 1922 Act also provided that consent would no longer be a defence to an indecent assault upon a child or young person under the age of 16. Thus most forms of sexual activity with a girl under 16 became a criminal offence whether or not she consented, but no time limit was prescribed." for the raising of this limit.
What can be done to remove the 12 months for victims of this crime now disclosing abuse?
I will cover this soon in another posting.
Until then, please sign if you haven't yet done so, and please keep sharing and encouraging others to do so - the link is HERE this needs to be removed for the sake of "Sarah", "Sylvie" and "Jane", and all other victims of this crime who have been, and will be denied justice. 

Saturday, 16 August 2014

Petition - a small update

Up to date petition is here - the petition - newly created on so that more people can sign, it isn't restricted to UK people, and (as far as I know) each signature will generate an e-mail to MoJ.
Please get signing & sharing.
Obviously I am not relying purely on a petition to highlight and to try to change this, I have also contacted various UK media a few times, however unfortunately they too seem disinterested in this as a story. There have been a couple of smaller regional papers who I have spoken to who have been interested in taking this up, however only if there were "local victims of this injustice in their area". Back to the drawing board then.
There are 17 MPs in "Sarah's" county, and they have all been e-mailed together with CPS.
Not one has replied.
Not surprisingly, the CPS could not assist me either. Their reply (at least I got one out of the 18 sent), partly reproduced below, passed the onus squarely onto MoJ, (which does make sense I suppose).
"It may assist if I explain the role of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).  The CPS is responsible for reviewing and, where appropriate, prosecuting most criminal cases in England and Wales following an investigation by the police. 
I note that your query relates to the SOA 1956 and the sentencing guidelines.  These fall within the remit of the Ministry of Justice, who would be best placed to answer your concerns"
So MoJ, what of them? Obviously I have contacted them as well. Amongst the questions I have asked them are these below:

1) When these guidelines were drawn up, how was this timescale thought up?
2) Who in particular decided that this should be added as a clause to the sentencing guidelines?
3) Who benefits from this 12 month timescale (certainly not any victim of this crime)
4) How can this be taken forward for "Sarah" and any future victims so that they can get justice and closure to their abuse?
Their response to me has answered none of these questions, and has in a nutshell said "tough shit, nothing we are going to do". Part of their response is detailed below:
"I regret I am unable to comment on individual cases such as the one you highlighted in your e-mail. However, I can confirm that we have no plans to retrospectively amend the criminal law enabling a prosecution to be brought in a case that pre-dates the commencement of the Sexual Offences Act 2003 for the offence of intercourse with a girl between the age of thirteen and sixteen (under section 6 of the Sexual Offences Act 1956) where the allegation was made more than twelve months after the offence charged. 
The general legal position in English law is that a person can only be guilty of a criminal offence according to the law as it was at the time when the offence was committed.  Article 7(1) of the European Convention on Human Rights also prohibits the retroactive application of criminal offences so as to penalise conduct which was not criminal conduct at the time when the act or omission occurred. This prohibits not only the creation of retroactive offences by legislation but also the retroactive application of offences through development of the common law." 
So there we have it. Not going to give up on this, for "Sarah", for any other victims who are in the same situation, or for any more cases which come up in the future, however the options I have to challenge this are dwindling away. There must be something that can be done? I will need to have a rethink on what to do next, and keep sharing the petition & "Sarah's" story & hope to get somewhere near to the required amount of signatures.
Hopefully readers in the UK and CI's that have read my previous post have already signed this. If not, the link is HERE
Thank you very much.

Saturday, 7 June 2014

Groomed for sex at 13 - but the law is powerless to do anything.

"A woman who was 13 when she was groomed and sexually abused by a man twice her age had her case dropped because a controversial legal ­loophole allowed her attacker to go free.
Today, she tells her harrowing story of how the six-month relationship “ruined her life”.
The woman’s happy family life was destroyed and she was brought up in care, passed around by social services.
But when the victim realised she was abused and plucked up the courage to seek justice against the man she once trusted, she was told by the Crown Prosecution Service he could not be charged.
A letter from a senior prosecutor, seen by the Mirror, states: “If the law was different, I would have charged [Mr X] with having unlawful sexual intercourse.”
Sexual offence laws were changed in 2004 so an adult who had sex with a child under 16 could be ­prosecuted with no time limit attached.
But charges cannot be brought against anyone for “consensual” sex with a child under 16 if it happened before 2004 and no complaint is made within a year."
Yet another failing of victims, by an out of date law that makes no sense at all.
Firstly children cannot consent - that is why we have an age of consent (quite obvious really to the majority of the population).
Secondly, what idiot drew up this previous Law, that included a "one year timescale" to report "ostensible" consent for 13 to 15 years old? Who could consider that there would be any benefit in doing this at the time? What about victims who didn't disclose until after a year after "ostensibly" consenting to being groomed and abused by an adult?
Thirdly, what happens now? Another way to stop victims coming forward, if they think their abuser may argue this "consent", therefore making their disclosures "null and void"
What is the point of reporting abuse that happened prior to 2004, if this is the end result?
According to the Mirror article, "It is thought to have allowed hundreds of Britain’s worst abusers to walk free as the police are left powerless to charge them". Is this good enough? Not in the slightest. As I said firstly, Appalling!
Proof of this Law is in the enclosed two links. In this link here the section that refers to this offence is article 6 "Intercourse with girl between thirteen and sixteen.". Sentencing guidelines relating to this can be found here, and this states "A prosecution for an offence committed under section 6 (or an attempt to commit that offence) must be commenced within 12 months of the alleged offence".
As-such, I have created a petition on to get this one year timescale removed for any future victims that come forward and disclose this type of grooming & rape. Why should victims of this crime, have their cases thrown out because of this unnecessary loophole? Why should some victims be allowed their day in court, and to see their suffering and abuse be dealt with (and hopefully with fair justice), whilst others have their abuse dismissed because of this unjust loophole from 10 years ago?
Please sign this and share it - 100,000 sigs needed before this can be considered for debate in the House of Commons - end date 10 June 2015. Thank you.

Saturday, 31 May 2014

Adam Hulin, Undue Leniency & No Justice.

Adam Hulin
"A TEENAGER plied a 12-year-old girl with vodka so he could sexually assault her on the back seat of his car, a court heard. Adam Hulin, of Hurst Lane, Headley, appeared for trial at Guildford Crown Court this week, accused of raping the girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons, in December 2012. The 19-year-old admitted driving the alleged victim to several locations in Bookham and performing sex acts with her, but denied having sexual intercourse and said he believed her to be aged 16. Opening the case for the prosecution on Monday, Alan Gardner said: "In the middle of 2012, Hulin added the girl as a friend on social media site Facebook. "During conversations they had on Facebook, he asked what school year she was in and, after answering she was in Year 7, his response was 'cute'. It is the prosecution's case that Hulin was well aware of her age."
"A MAN has been sentenced to a community order for performing sexual acts with a 12-year-old girl.
Adam Hulin of Hurst Lane, Headley, avoided prison despite admitting charges of oral rape of a child under 13 and assault of a child under 13 by penetration. In addition to the 12-month community order handed down at Guildford Crown Court on Wednesday (April 23), the 19-year-old was ordered to carry out 100 hours of unpaid work and attend six sessions on his attitude towards sexual encounters. A custodial term is within the sentencing council's guidelines for the offences he committed."
"He was found neither guilty or not guilty of this charge, after the jury was discharged and the judge heard evidence alone in what is known as a Newton hearing. During this hearing the judge accepted Hulin’s defence that at the time of the encounter he believed the girl was 16. It was decided the rape charge would remain on file. Mitigating at the sentencing hearing, Richard McConaghy said Hulin had engaged in what he had believed was “what most people would ordinarily define as regular sexual activity”. He added: “This incident took place in December 2012 and the complainant in this matter turned 13 in February 2013. If this incident had taken place three months later then, because of the matter for which Mr Hulin is now being sentenced, he would have had a complete defence of law. “It is simply to do with the fact that she was a couple of months shy of her 13th birthday that Mr Hulin finds himself subject to the law at all.”
"Convicted oral child rapist Adam Hulin will not take part in any sex offenders’ treatment programme it has emerged - even though sentencing guidelines say this should happen when a judge decides not to impose a jail  term. Hulin, 19, of Hookwood Cottages, in Hurst Lane, Headley, was given 100 hours of community service, a £60 victim surcharge and the requirement to attend six community reintegration sessions after pleading guilty to oral rape and sexual assault of a 12-year-old girl in Bookham in December 2012. The talented runner was only put on the Sex Offenders' Register for five years after he was sentenced by the judge Recorder George Lawson-Rogers QC at Guildford Crown Court last month. Last week, the Solicitor General Oliver Heald QC MP decided that the sentence handed to Hulin would not be reviewed - despite calls from the victim’s family and others who believed it was unduly lenient."
You seriously couldn't make this up. 
Knew she was about 12 by the fact he asked her what year she was in (year 7 = first year at secondary school). Yet somehow the judge was seemingly duped into believing that he believed she was 16! How does that work? There is more than a little difference between a 12 year old child & a 16 year old teenager - surely no-one could ever fall for that? Maybe a 14 or 15 year old, but a 12 year old?  
And what of the comments made by Barrister Richard McConaghy?
"This incident took place in December 2012 and the complainant in this matter turned 13 in February 2013. If this incident had taken place three months later then, because of the matter for which Mr Hulin is now being sentenced, he would have had a complete defence of law. “It is simply to do with the fact that she was a couple of months shy of her 13th birthday that Mr Hulin finds himself subject to the law at all.”
Am I missing something blindingly obvious here, or am I being incredibly stupid in assuming that by Law, the age of consent in the UK is 16, not 13? Children of 12 / 13 cannot consent. New guidelines published this year, as explained here include the following excert:
"The guideline makes it clear that victims are not responsible for what has happened to them. This is particularly emphasised in relation to offences committed against children. In the previous guideline there were child sex offences labelled as involving ‘ostensible consent’ – that is, where a child over 13 has apparently agreed to sexual activity. The Council believes that this is the wrong way of looking at these offences as children do not consent to their own abuse. The new guideline therefore looks more at the offender’s actions and behaviour towards the victim" So again, what is this Barrister going on about?
Unfortunately, appeals to the AG as Unduly lenient (yes I did appeal this case) where the AG decides not to review, cannot be re-appealed. It seems then, that for this "talented athlete" (not that this has anything to do with these offences), for sexually assaulting and orally raping a 12 year old child after plying her with vodka, a sentence of 100 hours community service, a £60 victim surcharge and 6 community reintegration sessions (which are NOT designed for sexual offences) is an appropriate sentence! Believe it or not. British Justice at its best again.

Saturday, 24 May 2014

Third Time Lucky for "GPS Monitoring" of Sex Offenders?

"Sex offenders could be forced to take lie detector tests when they are freed from jail to prove they pose no risk.
Probation officers have begun rigorous training to become lie detector examiners, under new plans by the Ministry of Justice.
Around 1,000 serious offenders released into the community will be put under stringent tests to ensure they are sticking to their licence conditions.
Justice Minister Jeremy Wright claims the move will give Britain one of the world's toughest approaches to Freed sex offenders.
The compulsory lie detector tests are the latest idea to tighten up controls on sex offenders, which will also see their every movement tracked by satellite tags, when the technology is available, the Ministry of Justice said."
Hang on, haven't we been here before? 
"Convicted child abusers will be forced to wear tracking devices upon their release, Justice Secretary Chris Grayling has promised.
Paedophiles will be equipped with GPS ankle tags so police can track their whereabouts after they have served their prison sentence.
The new scheme will be rolled out across Britain early next year, the Ministry of Justice confirmed today." (ie Spring 2013.... hmmm what happened then?)
These ideas are well behind the times of course, as this news item from 2003 shows - 
"The Home Office is considering using tracking technology to monitor sex offenders, BBC Newsnight has learnt. As public pressure mounts on the Government to find new ways of dealing with child abusers, a report for the programme revealed that ministers are considering the possibility of using technology to electronically track convicted child abusers every minute of the day.
Newsnight gained exclusive access to one of a number of satellite tracking systems being considered by the Home Office Electronic Monitoring Unit, which could follow paedophiles wherever they go.
The Sky Guardian system is the culmination of years of work by Shy Keenan, a victim of child sex abuse.
Speaking to the programme she said: "I spoke to one of the child molesters. I asked him straight, 'what kind of treatment would stop you?', and his response to me was, 'I like molesting children, it's great. I love doing it. The only thing that would actually stop me would be if you cellotaped a policeman and a probation officer to my arse'.
"And as blunt and straight as that was, it sat with me for ages."               
The Sky Guardian system Keenan created with Clive Crosby and the satellite tracking company Tracker involves a tag attached to the offender's ankle and a mobile phone that alarms if he fails to carry it with him.
He can be tracked 24 hours a day via a computer at a monitoring centre and certain areas like schools or playgrounds can be 'geo-fenced'.       
If the offender approaches these areas he can be contacted directly by a probation or police office on an automatic voice channel on the phone."
and this one from 2006
"According to Keenan, who has developed the satellite tracking system with firm Sky Guardian, the Home Office is enthusiastic about conducting trials for the scheme. Under the system - dubbed SG-Rom (Sky Guardian Remote Offender Management) - paedophiles would wear an almost indestructible bracelet and be given a mobile phone fitted with Global Positioning System (GPS) technology so police can constantly track the offender and pinpoint their exact location in the UK.
On the phone there is a "panic button" which offenders can press, linking them to trained counsellors if they are feeling vulnerable or believe they are in danger of re-offending.
If there are concerns about an offender's whereabouts, they can also be contacted via the mobile phone.
The location of schools can be "geo-fenced", meaning that an alert would be sent to the police if an offender approached. Police would be called immediately if the mobile phone and tag were separated."
Personally, I prefer the GPS device in the last two articles -"Phoenix R.O.M. as it was known (Remote Offender Management). Not only the device itself, but the added extra's such as a "talk-down" option, the alerts & mobile devices.
Why was this not taken seriously & implemented by the Government at the time, between 2002 and 2006, it really should have been!!
Will it be third time lucky?
Will the MoJ include, as part of this, the options that Phoenix ROM had?

Sunday, 11 May 2014

AVP and Rape

"Currently as it stands the legal definition for rape is:
The Sexual Offences Act 2003 defines rape in its first section, which reads:
“(1) A person (A) commits an offence if— 
(a) he intentionally penetrates the vagina, anus or mouth of another person (B) with his penis, 
(b) B does not consent to the penetration.."
The current definition means that sex without consent does not always constitute rape. When a woman forces another person into sex she is not charged with rape which goes against rape crisis campaigns which state "no consent is rape"."
The above link is a newly created petition created by "Smash Devon" - please sign and share.
There seem to be many similar, but at the same time, different meanings to the term "rape", depending where you look up the meaning of the word. A couple of examples are below: states "the unlawful compelling of a person through physical force or duress to have sexual intercourse."
Oxford Dictionary refers to rape as "A crime, typically committed by a man, of forcing another person to have sexual intercourse with the offender against their will". 
So, AVP, where does this come in?
In UK Law, as defined by the SoA 2003 as stated above, is gender specific, ie "he intentionally penetrates the vagina, anus or mouth of another person (B) with his penis" Under UK Law therefore, only a male can commit the offence of rape on either gender. If a female commits the offense of forcing another person into sex, it is either defined by law as Assault by penetration (even though, again, the SoA 2003 starts their definition with He), or Causing a person to engage in sexual activity without consent (again with the He). By having separate distinction between genders, and by having legislation named as this, it minimises the offense committed by a female from Rape to a more general type of "Sexual Assault".
CPS Guidelines have both offenses ("Rape" and "Causing a person to engage in sexual activity without consent", which as stated in this link is "a female equivalent of the offence of rape") as Indictable Only offenses, both which carry a maximum of Life Imprisonment, so why the difference in the naming of the offence?
Having the crime of rape described in this way, (ie can only be committed by a male), is prejudicial to any victim that has been raped by a female perpetrator. Having the crime that has been committed against them lumped together with any other type of "sexual assault" minimises the seriousness of the crime and this needs to change.
If both the type of offense is the same (indictable only), and the punishment for offenders supposedly being the same (maximum of life), where is the issue with having the one offense of rape which covers both genders of offender?
Having a quick search online, brought up this story from 2012 from the USA, which includes "a significant expansion of the FBI’s definition of rape, which will now cover several forms of sexual assault and include male rape.", which shows that this can be done.
Rape is rape, rape should legally mean one person (no matter what gender) forcing another person (no matter what gender) into sex. The end result is the same for victims - no difference - so the crime should be the same. Until it is, victims of female rapists will always have the crime committed against them trivialised and society will always view this as a lesser crime.
And, if you haven't yet, please sign the petition at the top.

Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Child Prostitutes - Rotherham MP in fight to change the law

Sarah Champion MP
"A South Yorkshire MP is celebrating after ministers agreed to consider removing the term ‘child prostitutes’ from Government legislation concerning victims of child sexual exploitation.
Sarah Champion, who represents Rotherham, has been lobbying for the removal of the terminology since her involvement in a major study into the sexual exploitation of children by children’s charity Barnardo’s.
The work was commissioned after it emerged that victims in Rotherham had been failed by the authorities for years, with leaked reports revealing a lack of action and prosecutions of culprits despite allegations of abuse and of gangs of men grooming vulnerable youngsters for sex.
Speaking in the House of Commons, Ms Champion urged ministers to take action and to remove archaic references to ‘child prostitutes’ from British law.
“There are currently 16 pieces of legislation that use the term ‘child prostitute’,” the Labour MP said.
“I have spoken to young people who have been victims of child sexual exploitation, and they say the expression makes them feel dirty and complicit.”
Home Affairs Minister Norman Baker said he was ‘very sympathetic’ to proposals recommended in the Barnardo’s report published last month.
He praised Ms Champion’s work and said he will consider how best to alter existing legislation.
“I am very sympathetic to that suggestion,” he said.
“Children who are sexually exploited, whether for commercial or other reasons, should not be referred to as prostitutes. They are victims.
“We will consider references in all legislation and guidance as opportunities arise, as well as considering carefully the wording used in any new legislation or guidance.”"
Fantastic news!
Regular readers will know that amongst other things, I have highlighted some of the appalling language both used in the media and in UK Legislation when it comes to describing sexual crimes committed against children. However whilst I have had success in the last few years in getting (some of) the media to see the offense they cause to victims, and the way in which they trivialise these crimes, so far I have had less success with regards to getting legislation changed.
Until March, it has been a case of banging a head against a brick wall - I have lost count of the amount of e-mails that have been sent from person to person to various departments & back again, just to get a small amount of wording changed in a few small pieces of legislation!! In March however I did manage to get contact with a Labour MP (not Sarah in the above article) who would help me take this forward.
Obviously as well as getting this particular part of wording changed (Child Prostitutes), it would be even better to at the same time get the rest changed (Children and Pornography), so I will be contacting both to see if this is something that can be achieved. With so much news over the last couple of year, being on child abuse and (supposedly) "victims rights", hopefully this is something that can once and for all be taken seriously, looked into and amended accordingly.

Thursday, 24 April 2014

This Legistation is an Utter Ass & Needs Changing.

11 April 2014
"A paedophile is allowed to have intimate photos of a young girl he abused because the police cannot erase them from his confiscated laptop before they return it to him.
The man was jailed for nine years in 2013 after admitting a number of sex offences including assaulting a child under the age of 13.
He has formally asked for a laptop and a mobile telephone to be handed back, according to human rights campaigner Liberty, which is representing the victim and her family.
Photos of the victim dressed in swimwear and leotards are on the computer, but Dorset Police say they cannot delete them because they are not legally classified as indecent or prohibited.
Consequently, the man, who is in his 50s and cannot be named for legal reasons, will still have access to a large number of personal photos of one girl when he is freed"
23 April 2014
"Dorset Police will delete images of sex attack victims from an offender’s laptop despite being told it would be against the law to do so. Earlier this year, officers were asked to refuse the return of a laptop and other electronic devices to a man who had been convicted of sexual offences. The equipment was seized during the initial stages of the investigation, but was not used during court proceedings as it contained no indecent images.
Current legislation indicates the police should return all equipment to its owner in its original condition. However, Dorset Police believe returning the images would be incompatible with the victims’ privacy rights under European law"
Good news you may think, and in this case, a resounding YES.
However, current legislation that was used to seize this offenders laptop & phones states that if nothing illegal is found on them they need to be returned in their original condition - despite there being photographs of his victim on them in leotards and swimwear (not considered "Indecent" under categories A to C of IIOC).
Staggering isn't it?
The (in)human rights of the offender yet again outweighs the rights of the victim.
Ask yourself, should someone who abuses a child and has images / films of them stored on his/her computer be allowed to keep these images? These images may not be "indecent" in themselves, but the purpose of them being kept is certainly "indecent".
Should victims have to simply acknowledge legislation as it stands and put up with it?
No, of course not. Legislation as it stands is wrong. Sex offenders and paedophiles should not be allowed to keep images/films of their victims.
And this is where YOU come in.
Martyn Underhill, Dorset's Police & Crime Commissioner has started a petition to get this legislation changed.
Please click Here to add your name to this petition to stop sex offenders retaining photo's of their victims.
Please please share this as well - please help Martyn get this to 100,000 signatures and therefore considered for debate in the House of Commons. This needs to change and change ASAP!
Imagine if your child was a victim of a paedophile.
Imagine if the offender had photographs or films of your child on their computer.
Would YOU be happy for them to legally keep these photographs.........?
***** Small update from Jersey - please see below reply from the relevant authorities here: 
"In any proceedings locally the court will make an order for destruction of devices containing Indecent Images of Children (IIOC) OR relevant material.
We would ensure that in these circumstances, as you set out below, the court were asked to make a complete destruction order. Any image of a victim we would argue is ‘relevant’."
Good news here then! ******

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Judge Bowers - Conclusion.

Readers may recall the above posting from last year regarding Judge Peter Bowers and his comments during the case of sex offender Gary Flynn, who walked free from court in October 2013 after he admitted indecently assaulting and forcing a young girl into oral sex over 15 years ago.
To recall, this is from the article in the Northern Echo at the time -
"Yesterday (Friday October 18), Judge Bowers attracted further criticism when he handed 35-year-old Gary Flynn a community order after he admitted indecently assaulting a young girl more than 15 years ago.
Flynn, of Belle Vue Court, Norton, near Stockton, admitted touching the younger girl’s genitals and forcing her to have oral sex when he was aged between 16 and 18.
Judge Bowers praised Flynn – previously cautioned for a similar offence - for pleading guilty and sparing his victim the ordeal of giving evidence before handing him a three year community supervision order.
He told him: “You were a teenager suffering from the effects of a head injury which made your maturity and responsibility less than somebody of your age.
“This is water under the bridge. You have lived 15 or 17 years without other convictions and there is no reason to think you will be committing offences in the future.”"
As well as appealing this sentence as "Unduly Lenient" (which as readers will know is something that anyone can do - if not please click on the link & find out how), I also registered a complaint about the language used.
Describing sexual abuse, "historic" or current, as "water under the bridge" is simply not acceptable, and is a prime example of why victims can be reluctant to come forward. Was Judge Bowers implying that as the sexual abuse was "Historic" it was less important & it didn't matter as much?
Anyway, I have two updates on this, as below.
Firstly the "unduly lenient" appeal
"After careful consideration the Solicitor General  decided not to refer the sentence imposed on Gary Flynn to the Court of Appeal as unduly lenient. The sentencing judge took account of the fact that the offender was sixteen when he committed the offence and that his maturity had been affected by a head injury. He had not offended in the intervening years and he pleaded guilty, so the victim did not have to give evidence. The judge explained that he was imposing a sentence which would enable the offender to engage in sex offender treatment. The Solicitor General concluded that the sentence was within the appropriate range, bearing in mind the relevant sentencing guidelines"
Not sure I really agree with this, but the decision is final following an appeal, so not a lot can be done.
Secondly the language used by Judge Bowers. I received a response from JCIO (Judicial Conduct Investigations Office), which indicates the following -
The Lord Chancellor and Lord Chief Justice considered my complaint, and have concluded no disciplinary action was necessary. However, they were both concerned about the impact of the comments made during the sentencing of Mr Flynn and consider that all judges must be very mindful of how they express themselves when dealing with sensitive issues. Judge Bowers received informal advice on the matter.
As I said in This posting, If you have any complaints against the conduct of the judiciary, including language like this, you also can complain to The Judicial Conduct's Office by letter or e-mail - and you don't have to be directly involved in the individual cases.
Anyone can make a difference. You included.

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Male vs Female Paedophiles Round 2

"A mother of one has been jailed for having sex with an eight-year-old boy more than 50 times.
Loren Morris, 21, slept with the boy for about two years starting when she was 16, a court heard.
She was charged after the boy, now 14, was overheard bragging to classmates he had slept with her.
Antoine Mullers, defending, said Morris, of Lyde, Herefordshire, stopped having sex with him when she realised it was ‘wrong’.
Judge Robert Juckes QC added: ‘I have come to the conclusion that due to the concern and embarrassment caused to both you and your family that you will not be offending again, let alone committing sexual offences.’
She was seen smiling and smoking at Worcester crown court yesterday where she was jailed for two years after being convicted of three counts of sexual intercourse with a child under 16.
Morris was also banned from contact with a child under 16 without the permission of a parent and put on the sex offenders’ register for ten years"
Following my post last year here AVP - Male vs Female Paedophiles, and ignoring the disgusting language used in this case (how the hell can anyone "have sex with" an eight year old?), here is a classic example of the way that female paedophiles are treated differently to male ones.
Imagine a male paedophile, sexually abusing or raping an eight year old more than FIFTY times, and getting a mere TWO YEARS custodial sentence. Chances are, the sentence would be nearer to one in double figures. Chances are, that if he did get a mere TWO YEARS there would be plenty of complaints to the AG's office, and the sentence would be dramatically increased.
But a female paedophile? How are complaints dealt with for a sentence of TWO YEARS for the sexual assault (equivalent of RAPE) of an EIGHT year old MORE THAN FIFTY TIMES?
I'll show you -
"Thank you for your email below regarding the sentence passed on Loren Morris.
The Law Officers, (the Attorney and Solicitor General) have the power to refer sentences for a limited number of offences to the Court of Appeal when they consider the sentence to be unduly lenient. This means more than lenient. A sentence will only be unduly lenient if it falls significantly below the sentence that any judge could reasonably have imposed in the circumstances of the particular case. Even then, the Court of Appeal has a wide discretion as to whether it should actually increase a sentence in a case.
Following a very careful review of this case the Solicitor General, Oliver Heald QC MP has decided not to refer the sentence of Loren Morris to the Court of Appeal, as he did not believe that the sentence for the offences would be increased"
As I said at the beginning, another classic example of how female paedophiles are treated far more leniently than male ones.
Disgusting - why is there such a difference - the offense is exactly the same. Same type of offender, same type of offence, same end result regarding there being a victim of child sexual abuse. Someone really needs to look & find out why there is such a sentence differential. The judicial outcome should be exactly the same - male / female / young / old.

Monday, 7 April 2014

C/O "Jersey Evening Propaganda" - "Seeking the Truth On Abuse"

From the JEP Screenshots in the above blog:
"Seeking the Truth on Abuse"
1) "The Skull Fragment that turned out to be a piece of coconut" (plus picture)
Yet, from Team Voice ( Jar/6 Voice For Protest ) we have the following e-mail exchanges:
"On 28th March we received an e-mail from a Ms Brock at the Laboratory in relation to the fragment. Here are some excerpts from the e-mail.
“Hi Vicky. Here are the details of the Jersey skull as discussed on the phone earlier. As I said, the chemistry of this bone is extremely unusual – nothing I am familiar with.” 
“During the first acid washes we often get a lot of fizzing as the mineral dissolves. The Jersey skull didn’t fizz at all, which suggested that preservation was poor, and which led me to test the nitrogen content of the bone.”
“The Jersey skull had 0.60 nitrogen, which suggested that it contained virtually no collagen. Once we had this result, Tom phoned you and told you it would be unlikely that we could date the sample, but that we would continue with the pre-treatment just in case.”
“Very surprisingly, the sample yielded 1.6% collagen (our cut off for dating is 1%).”
“As there is no nitrogen it cannot contain collagen unless it is highly degraded. The chances are it is highly contaminated and any date we get for it might not be accurate. I have e-mailed the director and asked if we should proceed with a date.”"
"On 31st March, Ms Brock e-mailed again. In this e-mail, headed, “Re: Jersey Skull for C14 Dating,” she said that ‘the Director had now expressed concern about what the fragment was. The Technician (who is not an Anthropologist) who was carrying out the process commented that it ‘looked like a coconut husk.’"

2)  "Public Funds has been misspent on expensive meals, accommodation and first class travel"
Again, from Team Voice ( "Entirely Accurate" ) we have the following e-mail sent from former DCO Lenny Harper -
"The first class flight to Australia. How many times is this nonsense going to be resurrected? Let me make one thing clear first of all. This trip was carried out in perfect accordance with States rules on long haul flights, and the relevant regulations can be found at paragraph 2.5 of the States Travel Policy. Have a look at the trips carried out by States members and Civil Servants to long haul destinations. You will find that NONE of them have travelled economy. Let me once again explain that on 28th May 2008 I submitted a full report to Frank Walker through Steven Austen-Vaughtier which explained all the circumstances of this trip, (which incidentally led directly to the conviction of a child abuser who received a jail sentence.) I will summarise some of the main points in the report.
· The initial quote for the flights was £7,879 for Business Class including the five hour flight from Perth to Brisbane. This was by Emirate Airlines who were by far the cheapest option. However, when it came to making the booking the only option was to return first class at an additional cost of £700. To offset this, the officers opted to fly the five hour journey from Perth to Brisbane by economy class, which meant that the first class journey on the return leg only cost £122 more. Again this was offset by the free chauffer services which saved a further £86. Net cost, £36. Furthermore, whilst away, the officers took NO rest days thus saving on a further eight days hotel and food costs. This was despite lengthy interviews with emotional and nervous victims.
Next, were the “unnecessary trips to London.” There were trips to London for three reasons as I recall. Firstly to interview victims and witnesses, and then record statements. Secondly, to arrange and secure the loan of specialist equipment from the Metropolitan Police such as the sifting machine which was borrowed from Scotland Yard free of charge and at a saving of many thousands of pounds. Thirdly, there were the trips to a department of the Met which advises on the operational security of investigations, both physical and other types of security. Not only was advice given, but Met officers visited the incident room at Jersey and carried out security surveys. Again, all free of charge. The officers from the department concerned at the Yard were all interviewed and provided full information on the services they provided. Funny how none of their statements have ever been mentioned.
And then of course, the revelation that visiting officers were put up in four star hotels in Jersey and in particular the “L’Horizon.” No mention of the fact that because of the hard work of our Admin staff and the fact that we were out of the tourist season and able to guarantee room occupancy, we actually only paid £70 a night at the hotel mentioned. How many States members and Civil Servants stay in hotels costing £70 a night when they go to the UK and other destinations on business? I can safely say that the answer, should CTV care to investigate will be none. Why, when you are at it, don’t you ask the SOJ Police to make the accounts for the hotels available? They will be revealing. Just where did Channel want us to accommodate officers living away from home and carrying out this difficult and important investigation? In tents?

3) "It also emerged that the Police costs for the three year investigation had reached £7.5 million"
from Rico Sorda blog ( The Srutiny Sub Panel Review ), we see the following
"In reality the budget for expenditure by the States of Jersey Police was £4.5 million. The other £3 million was accounted for by other States Departments. This £7.5 million figure was also never all down to decisions taken by Mr. Power and Mr. Harper. Half of the spending on the inquiry was committed after their time leading the investigation. That such easily researchable facts have consistently been ignored within both the BDO Alto Limited review and local media reporting surely demands the question as to why?"
Just a couple of things that jumped out, reading this spin.
Why, especially with the above Scrutiny Sub Panel review from 2011, a COI only just started, and a statement titled "Seeking the Truth on Abuse"is the JEP still spinning these claims? Has the JEP EVER "sought the truth on abuse" regarding the HDLG / child abuse scandal over the years?
Answers on a postage stamp.
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Monday, 31 March 2014

Spared Jail for rape of a three year old, and a petition.

Judge J Jurden
"A multimillionaire who pleaded guilty to raping his three-year-old daughter has been spared jail after a judge in Delaware ruled he would "not fare well" in prison.
Robert H Richards IV, heir to the du Pont chemical business, was given eight years' probation and ordered to seek treatment after he admitted to raping his three-year-old daughter in 2009.
Judge Jan Jurden ruled that Richards, 46, should not be handed a custodial sentence as he would "not fare well in Level 5 [prison] setting".
Details about the sentence only emerged after the defendant's former wife, Tracy, filed a lawsuit against him seeking compensation and punitive damages over the abuse of their daughter and his son.
According to the lawsuit, Richards admitted to assaulting his son and daughter between 2005 and 2007. Richards was originally charged with two counts of second-degree child rape, which carry a 10-year minimum sentence.
Richards hired one of Delaware's top defence lawyers, Eugene Maure, who won a plea bargain.
Richards avoided a jail term after admitting one count of fourth-degree rape – a lesser charge which carries no mandatory minimum jail term.
Delaware public defender Brendan O'Neill, told the Detroit Press: "It's an extremely rare circumstance that prison serves the inmate well.
"Prison is to punish, to segregate the offender from society, and the notion that prison serves people well hasn't proven to be true in most circumstances."
O'Neil added the sentence "raised questions" about the treatment of wealthy people by the justice system."
I won't insult you by going through the injustice and appalling sentence this is.
As this is in a US Court, there are no schemes as far as I am aware for appealing this ULS as there is in the UK.
However, there is a petition to fire the Judge, Jan Jurden, for this disgusting decision. You have the power. Sign this petition, share and RT all you can. This can not and will not be tolerated.
Link to petition here Petition to Fire Judge Jan Jurden