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Not Guilty – But not necessarily innocent either, nor unpunished?


StuartO

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Ched Evans, the footballer who was convicted of rape, has been acquitted at his retrial. 

But he had already served his sentence and already become an unemployable pariah in the football world, apart from a lower league job he was given since his conviction was quashed.  He has already suffered unrepairable damage to his career and probably to his lifetime earning prospects.  The woman whom he was accused of raping has also suffered in a big way; she has had to change her name and move home because of outing and hounding, eg  via social media, despite the lifelong guarantee of anonymity which the law says she should have.

The prosecution was unusual in that the woman never accused Evans of rape; she said all along that she was so drunk and/ordrugged that she remembers nothing of the episode.  It was the police and CPS who initiated the prosecution.  Various pressure groups also got involved in a big way because a celebrity was involved, mostly arguing for more protection for women and/or more prosecution of men for sexual assaults.

Evans has, immediately after his acquittal, apologised for his behaviour on that night and expressed sympathy for anyone affected by it.  The woman he was accused of raping has, as far as I can see, never attempted to profit from the episode in any way, for example by selling her story.

What does this prosecution and eventual acquittal tell us?

  • How was it that the CPS decided that this prosecution was in the public interest?  
  • Should they have to tell us?  
  • Should the individual who made the decision be named and face accountability?

  • Should those who have outed the woman be traced and prosecuted?  
  • Should Evans and/or the woman with whom he was intimate be compensated for their suffering?

 

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Guest pelmetman

Frankly it tells us what a pitiful state the much vaunted British judiciary is in *-) ........

 

But no doubt it proved to be a very nice earner for those not actually involved :-| ......

 

 

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Just my 2d worth.....I feel it is an indication of just how inept and 'corrupt' in terms of clarity and balance the CPS is. Add to that the 'correctness' as in inept, dithering and downright uselessness/inactivity/zealous activity of some police forces due to the aspirations (political or other aspects of self interest) of their hierarchy and you have the 'perfect storm' combination for a 'service' that just 'doesn't get it'!!
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A jury's verdict, if they are properly directed by the judge, has to be respected but I don't think the CPS can be criticised for deciding to prosecute in this case. There was an obvious issue as to whether there was consent - if the accuser was incapable of giving consent because she was too drunk and the defendant had no reasonable belief that she consented then the offence is made out.

 

We would be wise to warn our sons that if they don't give sufficient thought to whether the girl they're about to have sex with is so drunk that she might not be consenting and she has regrets later they might be in real trouble. Wise also to warn our daughters of the dangers of becoming so drunk that they get into a situation like the girl in this case. Not a satisfactory outcome for either of them as it turns out.

 

That said I don't think most men would choose to have sex with a woman that they had just picked up in a nighclub that was obviously very drunk because most men have more regard for women than Ched Evans demonstrated. From the press reports it seems like a very sordid scenario altogether. Although he has expressed his regrets and apologised for his behaviour I'm not sure he would have done so if this sorry tale had not been made public and threatened his career.

 

The good that may come out of all of this is that it has highlighted the consent issue as it relates to drunkeness as well as other forms of incapacity when it comes to the giving of consent. It is one thing that we would do well to add to the PHSE curriculum in schools.

 

Veronica

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I haven't read anywhere how the sex session came to the notice of the police and then the CPS - it seemed clear that the woman hadn't claimed that she had been raped and had simply said she didn't remember a thing.  Who made the complaint?

 

The two footballers come out of this looking like animals and so does the woman, all three were engaging in casual, promiscuous sex of a pretty sordid kind.  But there was no rape; that's what she second jury decided, having heard evidence about the woman's sexual history which the first jury had been denied.  It was the Appeal court which decided to quash the conviction and allow that evidence because normally these days a defendant cannot refer to the alleged victim's sexual history at all.

 

 

 

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I haven't read anywhere how the sex session came to the notice of the police and then the CPS - it seemed clear that the woman hadn't claimed that she had been raped and had simply said she didn't remember a thing.  Who made the complaint?

 

The two footballers come out of this looking like animals and so does the woman, all three were engaging in casual, promiscuous sex of a pretty sordid kind.  But there was no rape; that's what she second jury decided, having heard evidence about the woman's sexual history which the first jury had been denied.  It was the Appeal court which decided to quash the conviction and allow that evidence because normally these days a defendant cannot refer to the alleged victim's sexual history at all.

 

 

 

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StuartO - 2016-10-15 8:56 AMI haven't read anywhere how the sex session came to the notice of the police and then the CPS - it seemed clear that the woman hadn't claimed that she had been raped and had simply said she didn't remember a thing.  Who made the complaint?

 

The two footballers come out of this looking like animals and so does the woman, all three were engaging in casual, promiscuous sex of a pretty sordid kind.  But there was no rape; that's what she second jury decided, having heard evidence about the woman's sexual history which the first jury had been denied.  It was the Appeal court which decided to quash the conviction and allow that evidence because normally these days a defendant cannot refer to the alleged victim's sexual history at all.

 

 

The girl involved was obviously was prepared to carry it through to a trial and I don't think the police or CPS fall to be criticised for proceeding with it based on what they had been told about the state she was in at the time having drunk two glasses of wine, four double vodkas with lemonade, and a shot of sambuca. She was 19 I believe and said she felt tipsy but believed her drink may have been spiked. I think she's kidding herself that she wasn't legless to the point of insensible just based on what she said she had drunk and that was what the police were likely to believe when they estimated her blood alcohol levels.Trouble is with press reports is we don't hear the entire story unlike the jury who hear all the evidence so our individual verdict based on rather scant information and no opportunity to assess the evidence of the witnesses at first hand is pretty valueless. That's why I said the verdict must be respected. As I understand it evidence relating to her previous sexual history was deemed relevant at the retrial because the defence argued successfully that it was so similar to the defence account that the similarity cannot be explained by coincidence. That evidence must have been relevant both to actual consent and/or whether there was a reasonable belief on the part of Mr Evans that she was consenting. So difficult an issue that the prosecution were quite right to put it to the test before a jury IMO. The issue was not simple, the complainant not obviously lying and there was much more than a mere possibility on the evidence that she had been targeted because she was so drunk that she didn't know what was happening to her. Sad fact is that many people are accused of things they haven't done but if the evidence merits a trial then a trial it has to be. Veronica
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John52 - 2016-10-15 11:18 AM

 

Why is so much time and money being spent on this when far in far worse cases victims are left without help: https://www.theguardian.com/housing-network/2015/nov/06/cuts-womens-refuges-violence-death-social-housing Reminds me of the Shelter managers comment that it is easier to get sponsorship for a football team than a homeless person's shelter.

 

Couldn't agree more about the scandalous lack of provision for the protection of victims of domestic violence in the form of shelters, advice etc but I wouldn't say that money spent on prosecuting this case was wasted. It cost so much because the defendant had very considerable means with which to defend it and I know John you would be the last person to suggest that a decision whether to continue with the prosecution should be based on that.

 

Veronica

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Violet1956 - 2016-10-15 11:31 AM

 

It cost so much because the defendant had very considerable means with which to defend it and I know John you would be the last person to suggest that a decision whether to continue with the prosecution should be based on that.

 

Veronica

 

Good Point.

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John52 - 2016-10-15 3:51 PM
Violet1956 - 2016-10-15 11:31 AMIt cost so much because the defendant had very considerable means with which to defend it and I know John you would be the last person to suggest that a decision whether to continue with the prosecution should be based on that. Veronica
Good Point.

It is sometimes argued that the CPS continue with re-trails etc inappropriately because it isn't their money they're spending, but I don't think that's always or entirely true either.  It would be sad if an accused was forced to accept a conviction because he/she couldn't afford or doesn't think it's worth trying to defend but I'm sure lots of minor and motoring convictions go that way.

 

Certainly an accused person has to fund his own defence costs unless he/she is granted legal aid, but in celebrity cases lawyers sometime do it on a no-win-no-fee or a pro bono basis.  After an acquittal the court has discretion to refund defence costs from the public purse and a person acquitted after serving jail time can be compensated for his/her lost time.

 

In this case the accused realised he had behaved appallingly by most people's standards, just by having promiscuous sex in the way he did, but he knew he hadn't committed rape, so he was determined to at least escape that label.  People who feel they are victims of injustice sometimes move mountains to clear their name.  Maybe he also thinks he can rebuild his career but I somehow doubt that.  He's lost four years of what is always a short career as a footballer and he must surely still bear enough notoriety (for the promiscuous sex) to have limited footballing prospects.

 

A "Not Guilty" verdict does not say the person is innocent but it's as near as the law goes to doing that, for acquitted persons often claim it to be that too.  In this case a lot of people will still be willing to judge him harshly for the nature of promiscuous sex, even if they are hypocrites for doing so because they are overlooking some of the things they got up to when they were young and foolish.

 

The difference between being thought of scathingly for indulging in promiscuous sex and being convicted of rape is however enormous, which is why a jury has to be convinced "beyond reasonable doubt".  The second jury, having heard the evidence, acquitted Evans unanimously and I think that speaks volumes.  Thank goodness there can be exceptions to the general rule that alleged victims of rape cannot have their sexual history challenged. 

 

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Stuart I don't know whether you read it but in the article in the link that I posted the secret barrister provided another link to something he/she had written about anonymity for defendants in cases of this type. He/she argues quite cogently in favour of anonymity for defendants because of the catastrophic damage that can be done to someone by facing such charges even if they are acquitted. I'm swayed towards agreeing with him that it is appropriate to afford the defendant anonymity in cases where the complainant is given anonymity. It rather offends the equality of arms principle that a defendant is not.

 

Veronica

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Violet1956 - 2016-10-16 9:39 PMStuart I don't know whether you read it but in the article in the link that I posted the secret barrister provided another link to something he/she had written about anonymity for defendants in cases of this type. He/she argues quite cogently in favour of anonymity for defendants because of the catastrophic damage that can be done to someone by facing such charges even if they are acquitted. I'm swayed towards agreeing with him that it is appropriate to afford the defendant anonymity in cases where the complainant is given anonymity. It rather offends the equality of arms principle that a defendant is not. Veronica

 

Given the amount of damage that any sort of prosecution can impose on people who might subsequently be acquitted these days, I think we should protect every accused person's identity (from being broadcast, including on social media) until they are convicted.

 

You can always say "no smoke without fire" but was it really fair for the search of Cliff Richard's UK property to be broadcast by the BBC with the cooperation of Yorkshire Police?  There have also been examples of non-celebrities being trashed in the press and subsequently never charged or acquitted.

 

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StuartO - 2016-10-17 12:37 PM
Violet1956 - 2016-10-16 9:39 PMStuart I don't know whether you read it but in the article in the link that I posted the secret barrister provided another link to something he/she had written about anonymity for defendants in cases of this type. He/she argues quite cogently in favour of anonymity for defendants because of the catastrophic damage that can be done to someone by facing such charges even if they are acquitted. I'm swayed towards agreeing with him that it is appropriate to afford the defendant anonymity in cases where the complainant is given anonymity. It rather offends the equality of arms principle that a defendant is not. Veronica

 

Given the amount of damage that any sort of prosecution can impose on people who might subsequently be acquitted these days, I think we should protect every accused person's identity (from being broadcast, including on social media) until they are convicted.

 

You can always say "no smoke without fire" but was it really fair for the search of Cliff Richard's UK property to be broadcast by the BBC with the cooperation of Yorkshire Police?  There have also been examples of non-celebrities being trashed in the press and subsequently never charged or acquitted.

I agree Stuart. It was grossly unfair and some might say mendacious of the police and the media to report on the raid on Cliff Richard's home. The BBC should have known better. It was incompetence of the highest order that this happened or the cynical might believe it was orchestrated so as to make any possible case against him hopeless from the start. He is vulnerable as a celebrity to all sorts of potentially false accusations and must be treated as innocent of any offence during any inquiry. On the other hand, if he was guilty then the actions of the police and the media put the kibosh on any prosecution, so if there are victims then they are victims of a double disservice. His case presents a good argument for anonymity for people accused of crimes which the public find especially repugnant and where the claimant is granted anonymity. I'm not sure whether I would agree with you about anonymity for all accused people. I will have to give that some more thought. Still looking at houses in Suffolk in preparation for out retirement. One day I may have to sound you out on the best places to settle.
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StuartO - 2016-10-17 12:37 PM
Violet1956 - 2016-10-16 9:39 PMStuart I don't know whether you read it but in the article in the link that I posted the secret barrister provided another link to something he/she had written about anonymity for defendants in cases of this type. He/she argues quite cogently in favour of anonymity for defendants because of the catastrophic damage that can be done to someone by facing such charges even if they are acquitted. I'm swayed towards agreeing with him that it is appropriate to afford the defendant anonymity in cases where the complainant is given anonymity. It rather offends the equality of arms principle that a defendant is not. Veronica

 

Given the amount of damage that any sort of prosecution can impose on people who might subsequently be acquitted these days, I think we should protect every accused person's identity (from being broadcast, including on social media) until they are convicted.

 

You can always say "no smoke without fire" but was it really fair for the search of Cliff Richard's UK property to be broadcast by the BBC with the cooperation of Yorkshire Police?  There have also been examples of non-celebrities being trashed in the press and subsequently never charged or acquitted.

South Yorkshire police hardly have a great record ... Yet another Asian peado gang convicted today of multiple rapes of 13 year old girls ... Untouchables as they called themselves ... Disgraceful PC world gone crazy ... Turns out another 40 men arrested , 17 further cases ongoing and more arrests to come ... Asian peadophile gangs are rife it seems up and down the country and they've had the help of terrible police work and a politically correct world
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antony1969 - 2016-10-17 7:18 PM
StuartO - 2016-10-17 12:37 PM
Violet1956 - 2016-10-16 9:39 PMStuart I don't know whether you read it but in the article in the link that I posted the secret barrister provided another link to something he/she had written about anonymity for defendants in cases of this type. He/she argues quite cogently in favour of anonymity for defendants because of the catastrophic damage that can be done to someone by facing such charges even if they are acquitted. I'm swayed towards agreeing with him that it is appropriate to afford the defendant anonymity in cases where the complainant is given anonymity. It rather offends the equality of arms principle that a defendant is not. Veronica

 

Given the amount of damage that any sort of prosecution can impose on people who might subsequently be acquitted these days, I think we should protect every accused person's identity (from being broadcast, including on social media) until they are convicted.

 

You can always say "no smoke without fire" but was it really fair for the search of Cliff Richard's UK property to be broadcast by the BBC with the cooperation of Yorkshire Police?  There have also been examples of non-celebrities being trashed in the press and subsequently never charged or acquitted.

South Yorkshire police hardly have a great record ... Yet another Asian peado gang convicted today of multiple rapes of 13 year old girls ... Untouchables as they called themselves ... Disgraceful PC world gone crazy ... Turns out another 40 men arrested , 17 further cases ongoing and more arrests to come ... Asian peadophile gangs are rife it seems up and down the country and they've had the help of terrible police work and a politically correct world
I'm struggling to see how the securing of a conviction of a gang of paedophiles is a testament to a failure on the part of the police Anthony, or the arrest of 40 others and 17 ongoing cases. Can you enlighten us?Veronica
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Violet1956 - 2016-10-17 7:47 PM
antony1969 - 2016-10-17 7:18 PM
StuartO - 2016-10-17 12:37 PM
Violet1956 - 2016-10-16 9:39 PMStuart I don't know whether you read it but in the article in the link that I posted the secret barrister provided another link to something he/she had written about anonymity for defendants in cases of this type. He/she argues quite cogently in favour of anonymity for defendants because of the catastrophic damage that can be done to someone by facing such charges even if they are acquitted. I'm swayed towards agreeing with him that it is appropriate to afford the defendant anonymity in cases where the complainant is given anonymity. It rather offends the equality of arms principle that a defendant is not. Veronica

 

Given the amount of damage that any sort of prosecution can impose on people who might subsequently be acquitted these days, I think we should protect every accused person's identity (from being broadcast, including on social media) until they are convicted.

 

You can always say "no smoke without fire" but was it really fair for the search of Cliff Richard's UK property to be broadcast by the BBC with the cooperation of Yorkshire Police?  There have also been examples of non-celebrities being trashed in the press and subsequently never charged or acquitted.

South Yorkshire police hardly have a great record ... Yet another Asian peado gang convicted today of multiple rapes of 13 year old girls ... Untouchables as they called themselves ... Disgraceful PC world gone crazy ... Turns out another 40 men arrested , 17 further cases ongoing and more arrests to come ... Asian peadophile gangs are rife it seems up and down the country and they've had the help of terrible police work and a politically correct world
I'm struggling to see how the securing of a conviction of a gang of paedophiles is a testament to a failure on the part of the police Anthony, or the arrest of 40 others and 17 ongoing cases. Can you enlighten us?Veronica
Well its like this Veronica ... The 8 Asian peadophiles convicted today committed those crimes ten years or more ago ... Some were interviewed previously back in the day ... Due to horrendous policing which saw multiple important pieces of evidence go missing they were allowed to stay free and Im guessing these Asian peadophiles carried on committing horrendous sex crimes on innocent white girls ... Look on the web Veronica like you normally do , the reports are easy to find on those Asian peadophiles ... Don't just pump in Asian peadophiles though as you'll be on the net forever ... Rotherham Asian Peadophiles is the way to go
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antony1969 - 2016-10-17 8:00 PM
Violet1956 - 2016-10-17 7:47 PM
antony1969 - 2016-10-17 7:18 PM
StuartO - 2016-10-17 12:37 PM
Violet1956 - 2016-10-16 9:39 PMStuart I don't know whether you read it but in the article in the link that I posted the secret barrister provided another link to something he/she had written about anonymity for defendants in cases of this type. He/she argues quite cogently in favour of anonymity for defendants because of the catastrophic damage that can be done to someone by facing such charges even if they are acquitted. I'm swayed towards agreeing with him that it is appropriate to afford the defendant anonymity in cases where the complainant is given anonymity. It rather offends the equality of arms principle that a defendant is not. Veronica

 

Given the amount of damage that any sort of prosecution can impose on people who might subsequently be acquitted these days, I think we should protect every accused person's identity (from being broadcast, including on social media) until they are convicted.

 

You can always say "no smoke without fire" but was it really fair for the search of Cliff Richard's UK property to be broadcast by the BBC with the cooperation of Yorkshire Police?  There have also been examples of non-celebrities being trashed in the press and subsequently never charged or acquitted.

South Yorkshire police hardly have a great record ... Yet another Asian peado gang convicted today of multiple rapes of 13 year old girls ... Untouchables as they called themselves ... Disgraceful PC world gone crazy ... Turns out another 40 men arrested , 17 further cases ongoing and more arrests to come ... Asian peadophile gangs are rife it seems up and down the country and they've had the help of terrible police work and a politically correct world
I'm struggling to see how the securing of a conviction of a gang of paedophiles is a testament to a failure on the part of the police Anthony, or the arrest of 40 others and 17 ongoing cases. Can you enlighten us?Veronica
Well its like this Veronica ... The 8 Asian peadophiles convicted today committed those crimes ten years or more ago ... Some were interviewed previously back in the day ... Due to horrendous policing which saw multiple important pieces of evidence go missing they were allowed to stay free and Im guessing these Asian peadophiles carried on committing horrendous sex crimes on innocent white girls ... Look on the web Veronica like you normally do , the reports are easy to find on those Asian peadophiles ... Don't just pump in Asian peadophiles though as you'll be on the net forever ... Rotherham Asian Peadophiles is the way to go
I've tried that Anthony but all I get is old stuff do you have a link?
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https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2016/oct/17/rotherham-eight-men-convicted-of-sexually-exploiting-teenage-girls

 

Found it. But as you say there's a lot to sift through so it took a while. Seems the Police are doing a good job now following the Jay report. Haven't read that report but will try to get round to it. I've downloaded it and it is 159 pages long.

 

Veronica

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The OH has got the football on the telly so I have had time to quickly go through the Jay report. She did not identify political correctness as either the main or the only feature that caused these victims to be so badly served by the police, social services and the local authority. It may suit some to holler that it was all down to an unwillingness to acknowledge that it was a compliment of law breaking men of Pakistani origin that were involved in the sexual exploitation that caused these children to suffer but that is nothing near approaching the whole picture.

 

It is obviously a matter deserving of everyone's outrage and disappointment that the children were left unprotected. These were vile men who committed unspeakable acts against vulnerable children. I note there is some evidence in the report which shows that it was not only white children that were vulnerable to this type of behaviour and there has been some criticism from Pakistani women's groups that the plight of such children was also not addressed.

 

You just don't get the whole truth from soundbites in the press. It is easy for them to pick selected bits to rouse the readership into believing what they know their readership will find most annoying or inflammatory in order to keep them buying the paper.

 

I see Alexis Jay was recently appointed as the new Chairmen of the Child Sex Abuse enquiry. That seems like good news to me she is no "whitewasher" in my view if you read her report on Rotherham.

 

Veronica

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Violet1956 - 2016-10-17 10:07 PM

 

The OH has got the football on the telly so I have had time to quickly go through the Jay report. She did not identify political correctness as either the main or the only feature that caused these victims to be so badly served by the police, social services and the local authority. It may suit some to holler that it was all down to an unwillingness to acknowledge that it was a compliment of law breaking men of Pakistani origin that were involved in the sexual exploitation that caused these children to suffer but that is nothing near approaching the whole picture.

 

It is obviously a matter deserving of everyone's outrage and disappointment that the children were left unprotected. These were vile men who committed unspeakable acts against vulnerable children. I note there is some evidence in the report which shows that it was not only white children that were vulnerable to this type of behaviour and there has been some criticism from Pakistani women's groups that the plight of such children was also not addressed.

 

You just don't get the whole truth from soundbites in the press. It is easy for them to pick selected bits to rouse the readership into believing what they know their readership will find most annoying or inflammatory in order to keep them buying the paper.

 

I see Alexis Jay was recently appointed as the new Chairmen of the Child Sex Abuse enquiry. That seems like good news to me she is no "whitewasher" in my view if you read her report on Rotherham.

 

Veronica

 

I haven't read the report only seen the news regarding the many cases of Pakistani peadophile gangs ... Time and again the failure to act on the crimes because of a fear of racism has been mentioned , this case the police handling was disgraceful ... You dedicate a decent chunk of your post to point out white underage girls were not the only victims of these Pakistani perverts , Im not saying your wrong but from the reports Ive seen be it TV or press the girls have always been white , either way once again we see that our young white girls are suffering sickening sexual abuse at the hands of perverted Pakistani men on a large scale

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I was listening to a v interesting discussion on Sky News yesterday afternoon in which an activist lawyer was arguing for the abolishment of anonymity, even for the accusers in rape cases because it undermines open justice, a vital feature, and the original argument for it (that women weren't coming forward) was no longer true.  The convictions rates for rape are now 59% and lots of women come forward.

 

Unfortunately I couldn't listen to the end but it certainly captured my interest. The argument for "open justice above all" was very convincing.

 

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antony1969 - 2016-10-18 6:42 AM

 

Violet1956 - 2016-10-17 10:07 PM

 

The OH has got the football on the telly so I have had time to quickly go through the Jay report. She did not identify political correctness as either the main or the only feature that caused these victims to be so badly served by the police, social services and the local authority. It may suit some to holler that it was all down to an unwillingness to acknowledge that it was a compliment of law breaking men of Pakistani origin that were involved in the sexual exploitation that caused these children to suffer but that is nothing near approaching the whole picture.

 

It is obviously a matter deserving of everyone's outrage and disappointment that the children were left unprotected. These were vile men who committed unspeakable acts against vulnerable children. I note there is some evidence in the report which shows that it was not only white children that were vulnerable to this type of behaviour and there has been some criticism from Pakistani women's groups that the plight of such children was also not addressed.

 

You just don't get the whole truth from soundbites in the press. It is easy for them to pick selected bits to rouse the readership into believing what they know their readership will find most annoying or inflammatory in order to keep them buying the paper.

 

I see Alexis Jay was recently appointed as the new Chairmen of the Child Sex Abuse enquiry. That seems like good news to me she is no "whitewasher" in my view if you read her report on Rotherham.

 

Veronica

 

I haven't read the report only seen the news regarding the many cases of Pakistani peadophile gangs ... Time and again the failure to act on the crimes because of a fear of racism has been mentioned , this case the police handling was disgraceful ... You dedicate a decent chunk of your post to point out white underage girls were not the only victims of these Pakistani perverts , Im not saying your wrong but from the reports Ive seen be it TV or press the girls have always been white , either way once again we see that our young white girls are suffering sickening sexual abuse at the hands of perverted Pakistani men on a large scale

 

I highly recommend you read the report Anthony. Perhaps I was guilty in my post of downplaying a little too much the phenomenon you describe of the part played by some agencies in trying to suppress any reference to the racial origins of the perpetrators. It is mentioned in the report and she did make recommendations as a result. If there was also a perceived lack of balance in that I mentioned the vulnerability of other girls who were not white then the report deals with that too. Prosecutions were non-existent because of the attribution of some guilt on the part of such girls in the crimes committed against them from within their own communities which appears to all right thinking people to be ridiculous . This is said to lead to under reporting of such crimes due to the potential consequences should they make any complaint. It stands out for me that some Pakistani women have been prepared to raise their concerns about this.

 

I try to give a balanced view. I am no apologist for the behaviour arising from some of the cultural norms of some members of some immigrant groups that are entirely unacceptable in our society. I merely wish to demonstrate that there are other members of such groups that do not accept those norms or behaviours and who are willing to support the eradication of them.

 

I note what you say about the girls who have suffered sickening sexual abuse at the hands of perverted Pakistani men on a large scale. The report details the scale of the abuse but Jay begins by saying that the largest proportion of such crimes against children in the UK are are not committed by such minority groups, or something to that effect. Cold comfort for any victim but an indication that what happened in Rotherham was part of a much bigger picture of the abuse of vulnerable children throughout the UK from people from diverse backgrounds.

 

I found some of it so gross and hard to believe that anyone could treat another human being in that fashion. Let's hope those convicted go down for a very long time. I suspect those convicted of rape, especially if they pleaded not guilty will get life imprisonment.

 

Veronica

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StuartO - 2016-10-18 6:04 PMI was listening to a v interesting discussion on Sky News yesterday afternoon in which an activist lawyer was arguing for the abolishment of anonymity, even for the accusers in rape cases because it undermines open justice, a vital feature, and the original argument for it (that women weren't coming forward) was no longer true.  The convictions rates for rape are now 59% and lots of women come forward.

 

Unfortunately I couldn't listen to the end but it certainly captured my interest. The argument for "open justice above all" was very convincing.

I think you have a point Stuart if the victim didn't have anonymity then the equality of arms principle would be preserved. I'm not sure that we are quite there yet in terms of the willingness of victims to come forward. Let's not forget that some victims are male. Not sure how many of them would be willing to report they were raped. Any chap on here think they would? Also there are women who live in patriarchal mysogynistic communites that may have the perception that they have more to lose than to gain from making such a complaint and perpetrators exploit this. Veronica
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