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AIBU, can someone please explain this to me as i just can't understand it

(56 Posts)
curiousuze Sun 27-Jan-13 09:45:01

Posted too soon - I meant that he will still be tried, convicted and sentenced, his name will still be on register, only difference is that press can't publish his name. So he is still receiving punishment. Many sex offenders are not named in the press for a variety of reasons.

curiousuze Sun 27-Jan-13 09:35:56

Many many sex offenders are not identified, to protect the victim's anonymity. This is just anonymity for a different reason.

CinnabarRed Sun 27-Jan-13 09:25:32

I think, legally, the crime of which this man has been convicted is irrelevant to this ruling for anonymity.

For all we know another person convicted of an entirely different crime but equally at risk of suicide would also have been granted anonymity.

Of course criminals would prefer to keep their names out of the papers, but the vast majority wouldn't kill themselves over it.

And he wouldn't be free from risk on prison suicide watch: prisons are notoriously bad at protecting prisoners from self-harm.

courtsareadisgrace Sun 27-Jan-13 08:36:54

Here is the report from the BBC website

www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-21199386

From what I can see he blackmailed a teenaged girl into having sex with him? Or video sex over the internet?

Disgusting and disgraceful. But his name will come out.

What a fantastic use of the legal aid system.

I can't comment on the sentencing because there aren't enough details. That is an entirely separate thing from the anonymity issue.

I think it comes down to whether you believe the psychiatrist's report. The judge obviously did and made his decision in light of that. Suicidal people do sometimes succeed in killing themselves and the suicide rate in prisons is massively higher than in the general population. The courts have a duty of care to protect his right to life, whatever he has done.

nooka Sun 27-Jan-13 07:47:21

Sorry I didn't mean in general, of course I know it is in the European Convention, I meant with regard to prison sentencing and publicity. Simply because it's not something I've heard of before, so I wondered if this was a uniquely NI interpretation. The timing seems odd too, given the man was sentenced in December, so would there not have been some public notice at the time? In general anonymity appears to be applied very very sparingly in court (I thought it was just minors for defendants) so it does seem quite different from the norm (and wouldn't he be on the sex offenders register too?)

Might the person in question be very young himself (18), or other reasons that could explain the comparatively short sentence and anonymity? Perhaps they police can get other names from him, or use him in some way if he isn't known to be caught? Or is that too American tv drama?!

Is this 'right to life' some quirk of the NI legal system perhaps?

Um ... no, it's article 3 of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights and article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights. It's quite a popular idea, and a good one IMO.

BlueyDragon Sun 27-Jan-13 07:21:55

nooka, try the European Convention on Human Rights for your right to life. Suicide watch isn't a perfect solution to all threats of suicide and the court will have considered the Prison Service's capabilities when looking at this.

Courts act differently depending on the mental state of defendants. Which is why one MP (can't remember her name) was found unfit to try for the expenses scandal, whilst others were tried and convicted. Because the justice system cannot and should not be a system of trial by media/vigilante. The courts are really reluctant as a general rule to interfere with the principal of open justice so protecting the defendant's anonymity in this way is really unusual.

What TheSkiingGardner said.

Pinkerl Sun 27-Jan-13 07:20:11

I also don't understand what's difficult to understand here. A judge has ruled that there is a significant risk of suicide here.

The trouble is that by publishing the story it is an advert to everyone waiting for trial about how to keep your anonymity. We don't know all the facts in the case, and as awful as their crime may be, there is a right to life. By publicing it there will be more people claiming this when it is not true and potentially more money spent on assessments and suicide watch where it is not needed.

nooka Sun 27-Jan-13 07:03:12

Seems a bit odd to me. The chap appears to be in prison, so surely they would just put him on suicide watch? It's not that unusual for people accused or convicted of crimes to attempt to kill themselves, and he is in a controlled environment and will be for almost another two years. Is this 'right to life' some quirk of the NI legal system perhaps?

TheFallenNinja Sun 27-Jan-13 06:47:05

Its either a priest or a politician.

Just happen to have a good lawyer is all.

It isn't the victims standing in front of the court though, it is this man, who has been medically assessed. The judge has a duty to take medical facts into consideration. If a judge can't do that because of the emotive nature of the crime, then he shouldn't be a judge.

TheArbiter Sun 27-Jan-13 06:23:13

'so anyone with a black dog on can claim anonymity?'

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straw_man

The issue here was that the judge felt there was an immediate risk to the man's life. The issue was not that the man suffered from depression.

Disagree with it all you want, but don't make intellectually lazy statements.

CadleCrap Sun 27-Jan-13 06:07:58

shock Hop

HopAndSkip Sun 27-Jan-13 02:41:58

Of course the papers are going to publish this story, it is a challenge to the "rights of the Press".

No-doubt that it will be debated over the coming week.

Booyhoo Sun 27-Jan-13 00:43:20

i agree with bound and seeker

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 27-Jan-13 00:41:06

Could be lots of reasons as to why its a valid decision and many of those reasons could not be in the publics interest to know.

Or there could be none

quoteunquote Sun 27-Jan-13 00:30:48

TBH I think it's wierd and stupid and spiteful of the papers to publish the story

You are aware it is in the public interest to know when a precedent is set?

and newspapers report news, hence the name?

CajaDeLaMemoria Sun 27-Jan-13 00:24:26

This is a debate that can not be won.

Some people will believe life is sacred, all life, including his. Others will be eye for an eye, and not care if he is suicidal.

Legally, there are steps that are taken to ensure any suicidal thoughts are genuine, or to ensure as far as possible. There are in depth psychiatric tests which aim to expose liars and cheats. And then there is a duty of care to those who are genuinely suicidal, which is separate to his crime. He was not sentenced to having his name published. He was sentenced to jail time, which he will complete.

Maybe he does feel shame. Maybe he's suicidal and will offer useful information that does help the victims or expose other criminals, because of that shame.

Or maybe he's lying. But psychiatrists are not stupid, and they will be watching him.

It sounds odd, but there are likely to be factors we don't know about. Possibly this individual was coerced in some way by others or has MH problems and the police are interested in catching the others involved.
Or it's the Pope or something and the judge has been paid off. But we don't know.

TBH I think it's wierd and stupid and spiteful of the papers to publish the story. 'Person we can't name did something we can't talk about.' That's not news, it's just 'let's stir the hard-of-thinking up a bit on a slow news day.'

quoteunquote Sun 27-Jan-13 00:17:47

I wonder if the victims were asked what they thought of this, I would like to know.

offences including indecent images of children and blackmail

so we have

blackmail,

indecent images of children,

And other offences, as the word including is used, so blackmail and child porn were not the only offences.

did he blackmail the victims?

Was it a closed court?

so anyone with a black dog on can claim anonymity? WTF

That cannot work.

Did the children get anonymity when their photos were being shared around?

Are his victims not allowed to talk freely about someone who has been found guilty, are they not allowed to write about it?

he should not be released until he can be honest and open about what he has done, it is further abuse to the victims and should not be tolerated.

HildaOgden Sun 27-Jan-13 00:17:13

It's a very small community he is from,it won't take long for the locals to find out who he is anyway.

If he is expressing suicidal thoughts,then the powers that be have to take that seriously (duty of care and all that ).It's not something that everyone child abuser or prisoner says....quite a lot of them don't seem to be overly bothered actually.

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