What would Clement do?

A Labour blog that witters on about Clement Attlee. Hurrah for The Major!

Is This Justice???

Over the past two weeks, David Cameron has been feeling rather unwell, or “sick to my stomach” as he puts it. The source of his affliction has apparently been identified as a Court in Strasbourg, where it has been proposed that prisoners should be given the vote, and that those on the Sex Offenders Register might have the right to appeal.

Leaving aside voting rights for prisoners, which I am not at all sure about myself, the right to appeal needs looking into. At the moment anyone who commits any sexual offence is placed on the Register for life, regardless of circumstances.

The recent case in the South West is one example, and given what we know, it seems a reasonable outcome.

However, the following fictitious case would cause the same result:

A young woman of 18 years has sex at a party with a fifteen year old boy. The boys parents find out, and outraged, take the matter to the Police. Under due process of Law, the young woman is found guilty and serves a sentence. Upon leaving custody, she is now marked for life as a Sex Offender.

Now the right of appeal is not an automatic method of wiping names of the guilty off a list, but it would be compassionate, just, and ultimately wise if it was there to protect those who are unfairly bracketed with serial child abusers and child pornographers.

Not to Mr Cameron, nor his equally “sick” allies.

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2 thoughts on “Is This Justice???

  1. Not all sex offenders go on the register, it has to be quite a serious offence, not like your example.

    • Stuart, whilst it is true that not every offence goes on the register, having checked with a Solicitor pal, it is entirely concievable that a case like the one I outlined above could happen. There are a number of variables, it is true, but given the right circumstances, and media coverage is one of these, this could become fact. The right of appeal, either in the light of new evidence, or in a case of mistaken identity, or in the case of personal reform, is enshrined in law to redress injustice. With the hysteria that surrounds these cases, none of which has lessened child abuse or rape taking place, miscarriages of justice are likely to happen. If your son, or daughter accessed a dodgy porn site from their laptop on the say so of a mate, and they got caught, how would you expect them to be treated?Would they deserve to serve a lifelong sentence of CRBs and innuendo?

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