Archive for the ‘Police Censorship’ Category

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george hamilton Sex crime in Northern Ireland has risen by about 60% in the last six years. The number of reported rapes has reached an all-time high, including cases of stranger rapes which have doubled in the last 12 months.Chief Constable George Hamilton noted that the number of offences investigated by the Rape Crime Unit topped 600 in 2014/15 – up 24% on the previous year; More than 4,700 child abuse referrals were up 23%; And child sex crime, including peer-on-peer offending, is also on the rise.

Hamilton revealed the figures in a written question from the Policing Board. Hamilton goes on to explore some of the reasons for the increase and commented:

Advances in global technology mean that the use and popularity of social media and internet sites has risen at an unprecedented rate over the last 10 years, he adds.

It is difficult to determine what causes sexual violence. A number of recent studies are looking at the possibility of whether interest in extreme pornography might be a factor.

As an illustration, the PSNI have recently dealt with a case where a 16-year-old male claimed to have watched extreme pornography online and believed this to be normal and acceptable behaviour and went on to offend against his partner.

However a Belfast academic has said there is no evidence to link the viewing of pornography, violent or otherwise, with Northern Ireland’s soaring level of sex crime. Dr Graham Ellison of Queen’s University’s School of Law claimed that some academic studies actually suggest that exposure to pornography can even lead to a decrease in sexual offending.

Dr Ellison was reacting to coverage in the Belfast Telegraph after Chief Constable George Hamilton referred to research into whether extreme pornography was linked to sexual violence. In a letter published in the Belfast Telegraph, the criminologist said:

The assertion that watching pornography (whether violent or not) is responsible for a quantitative increase in sexual offences is rather spurious, particularly since no sources were cited to substantiate the remark.

However, there is now a huge volume of data from a range of clinical and social scientific studies to suggest that pornography has either no effect on a person’s behaviour, or that its effects are inconclusive.

Some studies actually suggest that exposure to pornography can even lead to a decrease in sexual offending. Just because ‘common sense’ tells us that something might be true does not actually mean that it is true.

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police nottinghamshire logo Three more police forces are considering expanding their definition of hate crime to include misogyny after an experiment in one city that saw about 20 investigations launched in two months. Devon and Cornwall, Durham and Lincolnshire are reported to be sending officers to Nottingham to discuss the experiment.Nottingham’s action against against supposedly sexist abuse has drawn national interest. The city force introduced specially trained police who targetted behaviour ranging from street harassment to unwanted physical approaches.

Several other forces have confirmed they are sending representatives to Nottingham this month to discuss the introduction of misogyny as a hate crime.

Dave Alton, the ‘hate crime manager’ for Nottingham police, said:

The number of reports we are receiving is comparable with other, more established, categories of hate crime. We have received numerous reports and have been able to provide a service to women in Nottinghamshire who perhaps wouldn’t have approached us six months ago. The reality is that all of the reports so far have required some form of police action.

Melanie Jeffs, local feminist campaigner said:

Women are groped, or groups of lads shout abuse or very sexualised comments at them. We have incidents of sexual touching, women being grabbed and men trying to get women into a car with them.

We know it’s a big issue that happens on a daily basis — it’s part of the everyday wallpaper of women’s lives. This is about raising awareness, making women feel that they don’t have to put up with it — and that’s very empowering. Already women are ringing through to the police saying: ‘I want this to be recorded as a misogynistic hate crime’.

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police nottinghamshire logo Uninvited sexual advances and unwanted verbal contact with a woman, including catcalling or wolf-whistling in the street, are considered to be hate crimes by Nottinghamshire police.The police force has expanded its categories of hate crime to include misogynistic incidents, characterised as behaviour targeted towards a victim simply because they are a woman. This means incidents ranging from street harassment to unwanted physical approaches can be reported to and investigated by the police.

The Nottinghamshire force defines a hate crime as just about anything:

Any incident which may or may not be deemed as a criminal offence, which is perceived by the victim or any other person, as being motivated by prejudice or hatred.

Misogyny hate crime is classed under the new policy as:

Incidents against women that are motivated by an attitude of a man towards a woman, and includes behaviour targeted towards a woman by men simply because they are a woman.

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milo artist Swiss artist Milo Moiré has been arrested in London after allowing strangers to stroke her breasts and genitals for her latest performance piece.The project, titled Mirror Box , saw the artist walk around various European cities with a large mirrored structure covering her body. Using a megaphone to attract attention, she would then invite strangers to stick their hands in the box, and fondle either her breasts or vagina for a 30-second period.

The performance is a follow-up to her naked protest against Cologne’s New Year’s Eve sex attacks. She explained that she wanted to give a symbol for the consensual nature of sexual acts. She said:

I am standing here today for women’s rights and sexual self-determination. Women have a sexuality, just like men have one. However, women decide for themselves when and how they want to be touched, and when they don’t.

However, when she arrived in London’s Trafalgar Square she was arrested shortly after the performance began — with police eventually forcing her to spend 24 hours in a prison cell, and fining her for a “4-digit fine”.

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police west yorkshire logo Criminal cases of publishing extreme porn and other supposedly obscene materials nearly trebled in West Yorkshire last year.Figures from the Home Office have revealed the number of recorded crimes of obscene publication in the year up to and including September 2015. Obscene materials were found to have been published on 673 occasions in West Yorkshire during this period, an increase of nearly treble compared to the 228 such crimes in the previous 12-month period.

According to the Crown Prosecution Service examples of materials that are considered obscene include bestiality, extreme sadomasochism, realistic portrayals of rape and bondage.

Across the whole of England and Wales there were 10,644 cases of obscene publication in the 12 months up to and including September 2015. This is the equivalent of 1.9 cases for every 10,000 people. This is an increase of 98% compared to 5,376 such crimes in the 12 months to September 2014.

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essex police logo The chief constable of Essex has called for new legislation to tackle an unimagined scale of online abuse that he clains is threatening to overwhelm the police service. Stephen Kavanagh argues it is necessary to consolidate and simplify offences committed online to improve the chance of justice for tens of thousands of victims:

There are crimes now taking place — the malicious use of intimate photographs for example — which we never would have imagined as an offence when I was a PC in the 80s. It’s not just the nature of it, it is the sheer volume.

The levels of abuse that now take place within the internet are on a level we never really expected. If we did try to deal with all of it we would clearly be swamped.

No police chief would claim the way we deliver police services has sufficiently adapted to the new threat and harms that the internet brings

A group of cross-party MPs will introduce a private member’s bill into parliament on Wednesday to update the law on cyber-enabled crime. The draft legislation, being introduced by Liz Saville Roberts, a Plaid Cymru MP, calls for a review and consolidation into one act of all the legislation currently being used against digital crime. It also calls for new powers to outlaw the use of spyware or webcams on digital devices without permission.

There are currently more than 30 pieces of legislation currently being used against online crimes. These include the Contempt of Court Act 1981, Protection from Harassment Act 1997, Malicious Communications Act 1988, Communications Act 2003, Offences Against the Person Act 1861, Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act 1992, Crime and Disorder Act 1998, Computer Misuse Act 1990, and the Criminal Justice Act 2003.

[What a nightmare it would be if the police got involved a wider remit of online insult. Injustice would surely prevail with the police always taking sides with the complainant. People would be quick to use false or trivial claims to settle scores with the ability to get people into serious trouble for minor insults or political incorrectness etc].

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public prosecution service logo An evangelical preacher who described Islam as satanic and heathen isto be prosecuted for insult.Speaking to his congregation in north Belfast on 18 May, McConnell said:

A new evil had arisen and there are cells of Muslims right throughout Britain.

Islam is heathen, Islam is satanic, Islam is a doctrine spawned in hell.

In a statement, Northern Ireland’s Public Prosecution Service (PPS) said the firebrand preacher had refused to accept a lesser punishment which meant the case would not have gone to court. A spokespersector said:

I can confirm that following consideration of a complaint in relation to an internet broadcast of a sermon in May 2014, a decision was taken to offer an individual an informed warning for an offence contrary to the Communications Act 2003.

That offence was one of sending, or causing to be sent, by means of a public electronic communications network, a message or other matter that was grossly offensive. The offer of an informed warning was refused by the defendant and accordingly the matter is now proceeding by way of a summary prosecution in the Magistrates Court.

Pastor McConnell initially defended his remarks made during a sermon at his Whitewell Metropolitan Tabernacle last May but, following a huge public outcry he apologised for any offence or distress caused.