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20 months for false rape claim. any threads on this?

(99 Posts)
mayorquimby Sun 28-Aug-11 15:09:01

title says it all really. Two women colluded in a false rape claim and got found out and have been sentenced to 20 months for perverting the course of justice.
Seems about the right sentence to me when you take into account the collusion of the two women as being an aggravating factor.
Just wondering what others thought.

EdithWeston Sun 28-Aug-11 15:26:25

I think this crime (if as reported here) is despicable.

False allegations - of any crime - do the harshest possible disservice to real victims, as well as diverting and tying up police time and effort.

CRIKRI Mon 29-Aug-11 12:22:17

It's just unfortunate that the media chooses to give maximum coverage to the few cases involving what are actual false claims of rape (e.g. no evidence sexual contact ever took place,) while rarely covering convictions for rape, unless these are particularly "newsworthy" (i.e. famous person involved, very violent attack, unusual circumstances, etc.)

The way cases are covered perpetuates the idea that false allegations of rape are rife, when evidence shows they are no greater than for any other crime. It also contributes to the perception that in those few cases that do go to court, a "not guilty" or "not proven" verdict means the man is innocent and the witness (i.e. the man or woman who say they were raped,) is a liar.

And then, there are cases like this one for which there seems to have been only one article in the press - a woman who went to the police to say she was raped, there was considerable forensic evidence to show she was raped, but she ended up serving 13 months of a 3 year sentence for wasting police time. Jailed After Reporting a Sexual Assault.

aliceliddell Mon 29-Aug-11 19:30:52


spiderpig8 Mon 29-Aug-11 20:18:32

Presumably layla was tried by a jury who had access to both sides of the case.

CRIKRI Mon 29-Aug-11 22:59:33

Spiderpig, did you read the article?

Did you see that the police doctor who examined her testified in her defence that her injuries were consistent with a sexual assault and not with being self-inflicted as the police claimed? Did you see the part about the description of her attackers closely matching the descriptions provided by other women who'd complained of sex attacks in the area? Did you see that she had no previous convictions or history of mental ill health that would suggest she was likely to self-harm or make false allegations against unknown assailants?

Even if she did have a history of self-harming or mental ill health, doncha think sentencing her to 3 years for perverting the course of justice is a teensy weensy bit harsh?

spiderpig8 Tue 30-Aug-11 08:36:33

But I'm guessing the jury had access to that information.I'm not saying she is guilty or innocent, just that that article was clearly written by those who support her, and we are only getting one side of the story whereas the jury had access to both.

NormaStanleyFletcher Tue 30-Aug-11 09:09:34

It is only one side of the story - but it looks like they didn't have access to all the evidence that was originally available (blonde pubic hair) or all of the evidence that was potentially available (blood on bra and from cardigan)

ThePosieParker Tue 30-Aug-11 09:14:30

All round depressing.

niceguy2 Tue 30-Aug-11 09:40:30

As Edith said, the issue is that false rape claims do every woman a disservice.

It really is a heinous crime to falsely accuse someone of rape.

CRIKRI Tue 30-Aug-11 12:49:18

With respect niceguy, in Layla's case, she did not accuse an individual of rape as she did not know who attacked her. She gave a description of the two men. She insists to this day that she was attacked and as Norma pointed out, there seem to have been a catalogue of errors by the police that meant crucial evidence that supported her claim was lost or disregarded.

It is never a nice thing to falsely accuse someone of something they didn't do, including rape. But, is it your view that unless an accuser sees the alleged assailant convicted, theirs is a "false claim of rape?" Something like 5% of rapes reported to the authorities result in convictions. However, it's not like the men and women who reported assaults suddenly think, "Oh, silly me, my mistake, of course I wasn't raped. The court knows best. I feel so much better now that I know I wasn't actually raped." Nope, I think you'll find that they still genuinely believe they have been raped, whether or not the evidence in court proved this beyond reasonable doubt. But, of course they are branded liars as well, and may face charges for having the temerity to report what they believed to be a rape without first ensuring they had a copper bottomed guarantee of a conviction.

spiderpig8 Tue 30-Aug-11 19:36:00

Lots of women DO invent rape stories though for a variety of reasons- attention seeking,get back at someone etc etc.
They can ruin a man's life as easy as that.And even when the man is exonerated there will be those who think 'hmmm no smoke without fire'.Inventing a rape is just as bad as perpertrating one

aliceliddell Tue 30-Aug-11 20:15:56

niceguy2 Luckily very few women make false allegations
spiderpig8 No we don't.

ThePosieParker Tue 30-Aug-11 20:42:27

Estimated figures for rape in 2007/8 were over 85,000...less than 15,000 reported and out of these 15,000 no more than 8% are false (of reported cases) and out of these compliance to Police internal guidelines it is more likely less than 3%.

A more conservative estimate is about 47,000 rapes, by Fawcett. But the 85,000 was not by a women's group but a large study about crime.

ThePosieParker Tue 30-Aug-11 20:54:46

So to simplify these figures out of every 200 rape cases only one may be a false claim. Out of 200 rape cases about 2 result in a conviction.

This is based upon 85,000 rape cases and not 15000 reported cases of which 1:20 result in is 1:112.

CRIKRI Wed 31-Aug-11 00:31:45

spiderpig8 said, "Inventing a rape is just as bad as perpetrating one."

Well, you completely avoided my question about whether you see only those cases resulting in a conviction as "true rape" and all the rest as "false allegations" or "inventing a rape."

I think I can be forgiven for thinking that you probably DO see most claims of rape as false. So no, I vehemently disagree with your assertion that this is "just as bad as perpetrating one."

Do you likewise believe being falsely accused of murder is just as bad as being murdered?

spiderpig8 Wed 31-Aug-11 08:35:10

No I don't think that is a good comparison,because (a) being murdered is pretty final and (b) people who have even been a suspect in a sex crime case are tinged with suspicion for ever -do you think they would ever be allowed to work with children for example?
whereas people who have been aquitted of murder tend not to be regarded in such a way. .
Posie -Your figures are a nonsense because they all hinge on the '85000 estimated rapes' . How has this national figure been arrived at if most of them have never been reported.The huge gap between estimates just go to show how wildly innacurate these estimates are!

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Wed 31-Aug-11 08:39:22

Victim surveys, largely.

Do you honestly believe that raping someone is no worse than lying about being raped?

worldgonecrazy Wed 31-Aug-11 08:57:18

I agree with spiderpig. What a man who is falsely accused of rape has to go through is bloody awful. Being arrested, friends and family, sometimes media knowing who they are, being the subject of some terrible gossip. Gossip is probably too light a word for it, but it's not a pleasant place to be. No guarantee of bail - rape/murder and arson are crimes for which there is no automatic right to bail. Being made to give DNA samples which will stay on police files unless a person actively asks for them to be removed. The only thing I can think of that is worse than being falsely accused of rape is being falsely accused of being a paedophile.

Regarding whether women who are liars or not is a tricky one. Is it only rape when a woman says it is? What if a woman who has consensual sex but later regrets it decides with all her heart that she has been raped and truly believes it (the mind being a strange thing at times). Has she been raped or not? After all, she truly believes it and may even have several friends who support her in that belief, but at the time she wasn't. It is this lack of true definition that makes figures and percentages so unreliable as evidence of anything. What if the 3% figure is actually the true figure or very close to the true figure? Why are women automatically presumed to be telling the truth and that all these rapists are getting away with it?

DevotionAndDesire Wed 31-Aug-11 09:06:35

A friend of mine was accused of rape by his ex gf after he broke up with her.

She claimed that for their entire 5 month relationship he repeatedly beaten and raped her and tied her to his bed for days on end. (all this apparently happened in his parents house).
She made up ridiculous stories about her abuse.

He was arrested and held for over four months until he was found innocent in court, the judge actually told the girl that he didn't believe a word she said and he thought she was nothing more that a jilted lover looking for revenge.

On the stand and during the investigation she changed her story four times.
But nobody did anything and she was never charged.

Mud sticks as they say and there are people that still gossip about him being a rapist.
He was even taken into the police station and questioned as to his whereabouts after a girl was assaulted in our area, because he was known to them.

The whole situation was just a nightmare and his life has been ruined by that stupid girl.
Who has actually accused two other people of rape since.

mayorquimby Wed 31-Aug-11 10:11:38

Being falsely accused of rape is an awful thing no doubt, nowhere near as bad as actually being raped however in my opinion.
I know which I'd choose if I had a gun to my head and it would be the being falsely accused option.
I'm also not of the belief that the lack of a conviction means that an allegation is false.

CRIKRI Wed 31-Aug-11 10:27:59

I disagree that when someone is acquitted of murder that they are automatically believed to be innocent. Mud can stick when one is accused of ANY crime. Yes, murder is final, but the result of rape can be a life utterly destroyed.

Okay, so it is quite clear that there are some here who believe that being forced to have sex against your will is just an occupational hazard of being female, sometimes male or a child. It's something they just have to accept and deal with as best they can. They should never expect sympathy from others and certainly never expect that the person who did it will be held accountable in any way.

They must remember at all times that it is far worse to accuse a person of raping you, even if you know that you were forced to have sex against your will, even if there is forensic evidence that points to rape. Statistically, it's unlikely that the person will be convicted. Therefore, no one will believe that a rape took place. That means you will be seen as a liar. Lying about rape is a far greater crime than being raped. Being raped is no big deal, remember? You've just got to pull up your pants socks and get on with your life. It's far worse for the man who forced you to have sex to live with a stain on his character for the rest of his life.

Patch yourself up, chin up, stiff upper lip and all that. You'll get over it. Maybe tell yourself that you actually wanted to be forced to have sex, rough sex, anal sex, etc. After all, that's what the rapist man insists happened, and you know everyone will believe him after all. Hey, maybe it will even get easier to deal with each time it happens in future.

Rape: A low risk, high reward activity. No wonder it's so popular!

worldgonecrazy Wed 31-Aug-11 10:35:07

I think I have spotted the problem, people are reading this and then reading what they want to see rather than what is actually written.

E.g. Crikki has read "inventing a rape is just as bad as perpetrating one" as "inventing a rape is far worse than perpetrating one".

I doubt that any sensible or rational debate or conversation can take place. Crikki, I seriously hope a man you love and respect is never dragged through the hell of a false accusation. If it ever does, maybe you will recall your snide comments and feel some remorse.

CRIKRI Wed 31-Aug-11 11:00:50

World, there isn't much difference between "as bad" and "worse" in my book, in this context.

For what it is worth, I have known someone who was accused of a sexual assault on a child by the child's mother. No, it wasn't a pleasant experience for him. Yes, there were tongues wagging and fingers pointing. That was 8 years ago, and apart from odd whispers, he's remained in his chosen line of work and is still accepted within the community.

I have also known both men and women who have been sexually assaulted. None saw their attackers held to justice. I do not believe that any of them are liars. Sadly, some were ostracised from their communities for making allegations (including two who were raped before they were in their teens, but were still thought to be the villains of the piece,) and none have been able to just brush it off and move on. One committed suicide last year - a good 5 or 6 years on from the rape. Another died of a condition related to drug abuse.

But, who gives a shit about them. They were all just liars, right?

aliceliddell Wed 31-Aug-11 11:13:55

May I suggest that people acquaint themselves with the basic facts on the subject of rape before wading in with a load of reactionary bollocks and mythology? Because these threads often include women who have been raped, didn't imagine it, didn't make it up, and do find it distressing to have what they thought was a safe space trashed by trolls.

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