UK Legal News

 2017

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  Guilty of trying to save a life...

Shameful prosecution of a cleaner arrested because she tried to help save the life of a customer who collapsed in a brothel


Link Here 28th July 2017

prostitutes collective logoMs Norman, the 70-year-old woman who was arrested because she stayed to try to save the life of a man who had collapsed in the brothel where she was working as a cleaner, was today found guilty of assisting in the management of a brothel.

Cari Mitchell from the English Collective of Prostitutes, which has been supporting Ms Norman and who was present in court, commented.

It is a terrible injustice that a woman who performed a civic duty by trying to save another human being's life should find herself with a criminal record for her efforts. Shame on the police, the Crown Prosecution Service and the Judge. If they had any morals or were in anyway concerned for women's safety this prosecution would never have been brought or Ms Norman would have been found not guilty. How was prosecuting Ms Norman in the public interest?

Ms Norman was too upset to comment and was very distressed at getting a criminal record. She thanked her supporters and the ECP for sticking with her throughout this ordeal.

This prosecution sends a signal to sex workers everywhere that the police are more concerned with their targets and consequently their funding than with the value of human life. Sex workers who are victims of rape and other violence will be deterred from reporting for fear of being put on trial for prostitution. Violent attackers are more likely to go free as a result.

Ms Norman was convicted of assisting in the management of a brothel because she helped post ONE advert and recorded the details of some clients. Everyone knew that she was the cleaner and not the manager or owner. She got paid 26 an hour. She was given a conditional discharge and has to pay towards court costs. A criminal record wrecks havoc with someone's life 203 affecting everything from travel to housing to insurance cover. We now wait to see if the police and courts further persecute Ms Norman by trying to take her savings and assets under proceeds of crime law.

This prosecution flies in the face of the National Police Chiefs' Council policing strategy which recognises sex workers as a vulnerable group that we have a responsibility to protect. Evidence from New Zealand where prostitution was decriminalised in 2003 found that 70% of sex workers said that since decriminalisation they were more likely to report incidents of violence to the police.* In the UK. there are significant differences in the numbers of sex workers reporting violence depending on police policy in that area. For example, in Lancashire, where police made known that their priority was harm reduction, 46% of sex workers reported when they were a victim of crime. This compared to 5% of victims in Nottinghamshire where police had a policy of arresting both sex workers and clients.

 

  Dangerous snooping...

Extreme porn court case reveals prosecution apparently initiated as a result of state snooping on website browsing


Link Here 9th March 2017
HM Courts ServiceA self-employed tutor who was found to have bestiality images on his computer equipment has fallen victim to state snooping.

Leeds Crown Court heard police raided a man's home because of suspicious activity on his use of the internet.

Duncan Ritchie, prosecuting, said the house was searched and a laptop and two external hard drives were seized. When they were examined 39 moving images involving adults and animals were found.

The unfortunate victim explained that he was not aware it was a criminal offence. His defence lawyer said:

He is mortified he has committed a criminal offence. Had he realised he would have steered clear of them.

He was given two months in prison suspended for two years and has to attend 10 rehabilitation activity days. He was also fined 340.

 

  Fined for what exactly?...

Man fined for paying for sex in Nottingham


Link Here 13th January 2017
HM Courts ServiceA man who paid 30 for sex was fined 410 for an unknown offence when the case was heard by Nottingham magistrates.

A police community support officer was in plain clothes in a hot spot for prostitution , off Forest Road East, when she saw a man approach a known prostitute. She called the police and the victim was apprehended.

The man was said to be in drink. so presumably not kerb crawling, as  drink driving would surely have been cited. Ali Zaki prosecuting commented:

He said he had been in Nottingham city centre for a few drinks and went to the vice area and paid 30 for oral sex.

The victim was found guilty of soliciting to obtain sexual services of a prostitute in Forest Grove and was fined 410.

 

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