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Home arrow Legal arrow Anonymity for those accused of sex offences - my views
Anonymity for those accused of sex offences - my views PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 09 March 2007
Obviously I'm heavily biased here - if anonymity until conviction had been in force, my case would almost certainly not have been pursued.

The weak and fictitious false allegations from 37 years ago would never have been taken seriously. But the chance of a high profile scalp and the knowledge that the bigger the name, the more the publicity and the greater chance of opportunists coming forward with invented or exaggerated tales, leading to conviction and loads of great publicity for police and CPS (and big money for "victims" in compensation and media fees), proved irresistable.

But let's ask why Michael Howard, Home Secretary in the 90's who changed the law on anonymity and historic allegations, did so.

He did it for the perfectly correct reason that then abusers of children in homes or circumstances years earlier could still be brought to justice.

Unfortunately it also opened the floodgates for innocent people to suffer and greedy liars to benefit.

And I'm afraid the huge amount of people prepared to perjure themselves in order to get money, revenge, sympathy, attention or any of the other justifications for lying has meant we have to balance one injustice against the other.

Given the fact that thousands of innocent people have suffered through this - I'm afraid the public cannot be trusted with the law as it stands and anonymity must return.

I hate the fact that this may mean real abusers could escape justice but sadly there is no alternative.

The destruction of innocent human beings is an even worse crime.

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