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Unread 13 Jan 2007, 15:45   #1
meglamaniac
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Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

This issue seems to resurface every year or so in UK politics and on the news.
My question today was brought about by a report on BBC news I saw at lunch (online version here).

Personally, I'm all for it. Falsely accusing someone of rape for whatever reason (although revenge would seem to be a major cause) leaves a stain on their character which is not easily removed.

When a woman accuses a man, as is usually the case, regardless of the verdict there's the whole "no smoke without fire" nonsense put forward by many, so-called "women's groups" especially. In this sense it is nearly impossible for a man to be cleared of rape in the eyes of the public (or at least 50% of it) because everyone knows every man is a potential rapist, right girls?

In fact, it is this twisted viewpoint which is my other point to discuss. This is a quote from the end of the article:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Raving Feminist
Lisa Longstaff, of Women Against Rape, drew attention to the fact that the conviction rate for rape is just five per cent.

"I think it is a national scandal that the government is considering tinkering with the law on anonymity at all - let alone that they are also considering keeping a DNA database of women who have made so-called false allegations," she said.
Excuse me, what?
How is it a scandle to revoke anonymity from people who shouldn't have it in the first place? The protection is there for the benefit of genuine cases and that's absolutely fine with me, but to defend that protection for the fakers is inexcusable.
These are people who should be locked up anyway for perjury; in what way do they deserve the protection of people not knowing what they've done to an innocent person?

Now as it happens I saw the woman quoted above on the televised news report. You could see the self-righteous spittle drooling out of her mouth as she ranted about this, and it's with these narrow-minded idiots that the problem lies. This is the sort of person who has perpetuated unfairness in the system as it stands at the moment, the kind of person who believes all women are delicate flowers incapable of wrongdoing, never mind even contemplating such a malicious act as falsely accusing a man of rape.

I fully understand the danger of mob justice if names are released, as I'm sure there are no end of angry men who would like to "explain their grievances" shall we say, but frankly you should have thought about that before you tried to drag someone elses name through the gutter.
So far as I'm concerned there is no reason for false accusers to be given anonymity for any crime.


So, er, yeah. Discuss.

Also, I'll be taking bets on when Yahwe jumps in.
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Unread 13 Jan 2007, 15:54   #2
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Despite sensationalism on both sides, rape is no different from any other form of assault and shouldnt be treated differently from other criminal charges. If there is a general law where people who have been demonstrated to have lied about assault/burglary/murder/whatever charges are to be named/not-named, then the same should apply to rape cases as a matter of course.

Generally speaking, anyone who can be shown beyond reasonable doubt to have fabricated criminal charges under any circumstance should be punished heavily; a reasonable outcome would be giving them whatever sentence the defendant would have been expected to receive had the prosecution been successful.
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Unread 13 Jan 2007, 15:57   #3
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

What should happen is that if a woman has made a false claim previously, it should be mentioned at a future rape trial if she is involved. Such evidence would be prejudicial (although not insurmountable) to the prosecution case and we are in a position for justice to be done. I don't see how keeping a record of it is wrong, as long as it isn't made public if the case never reaches trial although maybe we are into the realms of 'wasting police time'. Obviously if it does reach trial, perjury can come into play.

I don't think we should create witchhunts, it doesn't help anyone.
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Unread 13 Jan 2007, 16:22   #4
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Just because a man is found innocent of rape doesn't automatically make the woman a liar. If the 5% statistic you have given is correct then you are implying that 95% of women who report rapes are liars and should be labelled as such.
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Unread 13 Jan 2007, 16:23   #5
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

personally i think that the best option would be to allow anonymity for the men involved unless/until they were convicted. Thus allowing him a chance to get on with his life without fear of the 'no smoke without fire' rearing its ugly head
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Unread 13 Jan 2007, 17:04   #6
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Being found innocent of rape and making false charges are different issues.

Proven innocent can be the result of many issues other than not actually doing the crime. (eg: snafoo in the evidence being found without a proper warrent etc, witness not turning up in court, not being read rights on arrest.. the list could continue )

If charges prove to be false .. then the accuser should be charged with wasting police time and prosecuted, the crime and the trial are no longer under the auspices of the rape annonymity issues and therefore the *crime* of making false charges punishable in the public eye ( i think this has already happened )
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Unread 13 Jan 2007, 17:09   #7
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mistwraith
Being found innocent of rape and making false charges are different issues.

Proven innocent can be the result of many issues other than not actually doing the crime. (eg: snafoo in the evidence being found without a proper warrent etc, witness not turning up in court, not being read rights on arrest.. the list could continue )

If charges prove to be false .. then the accuser should be charged with wasting police time and prosecuted, the crime and the trial are no longer under the auspices of the rape annonymity issues and therefore the *crime* of making false charges punishable in the public eye ( i think this has already happened )
By what process is to be used to differentiate false claims and real claims where the wrong verdict has been reached?
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Unread 13 Jan 2007, 18:03   #8
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Why was annonymity introduced? I've probably missed some crucial point but id find it difficult to believe people would point fingers and label the women hussys etc, im guessing but did the tabloids on the one hand plaster the names of the women across their pages and on the other call for annonymity?

Im not sure why the impact of the media attention is particularly bad for rape, it seems to be pretty shit if they're murdered (as recent prostitute murders showed).

Personally id grant annonymity to everyone, victims and the accused.
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Unread 13 Jan 2007, 18:13   #9
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Quote:
Originally Posted by milo
Why was annonymity introduced? I've probably missed some crucial point but id find it difficult to believe people would point fingers and label the women hussys etc, im guessing but did the tabloids on the one hand plaster the names of the women across their pages and on the other call for annonymity?

Im not sure why the impact of the media attention is particularly bad for rape, it seems to be pretty shit if they're murdered (as recent prostitute murders showed).

Personally id grant annonymity to everyone, victims and the accused.
I would imagine it's because there is a sort stigma about being raped as well as being a rapist. It's completely different kind of thing, but some people would find everyone knowing you were raped to be a rather unsttractive proposition.
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Unread 13 Jan 2007, 20:34   #10
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Yes.

My next door neighbor was charged with rape and he is an OSU wrestler so his name and picture have been plastered all over the papers and news. Not only is he a good friend of mine, he's one of the nicest guys I know, and rape is out of the picture for a guy like him.

They goto trial in Feburary and it's probable that he will come out clean, but his name has been smeared for life. The girl has changed her story at least 2 times, conveniently 'forgotten' details, and has shown herself to be just a general idiot. The fact that my friends parents are extremely wealthy is another thing that should be taken into account.

I'm sure you can google it and get details, but it's fairly straight forward.

While they smear his name in the mud, she is covered by the rape shield and holds anonymity.
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Unread 13 Jan 2007, 20:53   #11
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

You should tell us her name, we can do the smearing!
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Unread 14 Jan 2007, 00:44   #12
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Am I the only one who's seen the stories in the press over the past year or so about women who've been named, prosecuted, convicted and jailed for lying about being raped?

But I agree with roadrunner - anyone accused of rape should have total anonymity. There shouldn't just be a ban on reporting it: the police should have to try to make sure no one (friends, family, etc.) even finds out about the accusation until someone is convicted (as opposed to what they like doing at the moment, which is walk into his crowded workplace and announce "John Smith, you're under arrest for rape" in a loud voice).

This would hopefully (a) stop innocent people being pilloried and (b) stop the false accusers who know it'll never go anywhere but want to ruin someone's life anyway (no point in making stupid accusations if no one will ever find out).

P.S. In before Yahwe points out that no one is ever "found innocent".
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Unread 15 Jan 2007, 01:48   #13
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

The problem lies in the fact that so few of those men who are charged of rape actually get convicted of the offence. The burden of proof is beyond reasonable doubt and in most cases you cant edge it past reasonable doubt especially as its usually someone the woman knows or is at some drunken bar etc.

As such if you removed the anonymity and a girl who accused someone of rape (and was infact telling the truth) but was unable to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that she was infact telling the truth.....she would therefore suffer the same social ostrisization that the male normally incurrs.

Also the amount of women who do come forward and report rape would drop. Ive come into contact with the police regards rape before (no it wasnt me before you all go lol lol lol). A friend was basically drugged. Dragged off into the toilets at a club. She cant remember anything. When she staggered into my flat at 2am and acted really really 'odd' (i know what shes like drunk and she wasnt *just* drunk) I phoned NHS direct with the symptoms and asked what to do. They told us to contact the police and gave us instructions as to what to do with her. She got carted off to hospital for the night for checks. However when the police turned up and we said 'we think it might be daterape or something of that sort' I couldnt believe the complete hostility to the suggestion. She was asked questions that basically amounted to "look stop lying to us. We know you drank and you are a pretty girl so dont bullshit us. Just stop the charade so everyone can go home". It pissed me off immensly and made me realise why so few women do actually decide to start criminal proceedings. The system is setup to actively dissuade women as its such a difficult thing to prove in 99% of cases.


I do think that in the case of rape and other sexual offences against the person both parties should remain anonymous and unreported until the trial has concluded or a plea of guilty has been entered. Even being accused of 'alleged rape' is enough to destroy someones life and I dont think either the male or female should have to go through the ordeal of public humiliation and charachter assasination.
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Unread 15 Jan 2007, 13:24   #14
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nodrog
Despite sensationalism on both sides, rape is no different from any other form of assault and shouldnt be treated differently from other criminal charges. If there is a general law where people who have been demonstrated to have lied about assault/burglary/murder/whatever charges are to be named/not-named, then the same should apply to rape cases as a matter of course.

Generally speaking, anyone who can be shown beyond reasonable doubt to have fabricated criminal charges under any circumstance should be punished heavily; a reasonable outcome would be giving them whatever sentence the defendant would have been expected to receive had the prosecution been successful.
Read swifts "Gullivers Travels"? Remember what happens in lilliputian courts when the prosecuting party is found to have lied?
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Unread 15 Jan 2007, 19:54   #15
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Malak
Read swifts "Gullivers Travels"? Remember what happens in lilliputian courts when the prosecuting party is found to have lied?
I'm pretty sure it's when the accused party is found to be innocent, not just when the prosecuting party is found to have lied.
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Unread 16 Jan 2007, 09:25   #16
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Yes JammyJim .. use of date rape drugs is a huge concern as the drugged one rarely remembers enough to bring a prosectution and usually spends years having flashbacks until the full extent of the night in question becomes clear.

the raper in cases like this is more likely to be found innocent.

Annonimity for both parties would solve all theese issues.

And also go some way to prevent *rich* people paying off accusers, so false claims can be prosecuted.
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Unread 16 Jan 2007, 09:47   #17
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Im of the opinion it should be completely anonymous for both sides until conviction where the guilty party is named - With one exception
If the accuser brings about a case maliciously and fraudulently with the intent to destroy the other persons life - then they should be named and shamed when their case is dismissed
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Unread 16 Jan 2007, 11:58   #18
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil^
If the accuser brings about a case maliciously and fraudulently with the intent to destroy the other persons life - then they should be named and shamed when their case is dismissed

This is an interesting point, again, there's been a lot of debate. I totally agree here, and I think a lot of what you say should be implemented into the crime law system at large. The mere fact of being accused of something is often enough to place a permanent red spot on you, especially if you're a public person. A Finnish right-wing politician recently was on trial for pimping, blackmail, threatening, and assault on his wife. The wife was the person pressing charges.

He was found not quilty of the crimes he was accused of, yet we can pretty much say the charges in conjunction with the tabloid mags really ruined a lot of his run for a parliament seat. This said, the next elections are in April, and this a lot happened in November-December or so. Before someone inserts a witty remark regarding tabloids and the fact that mainly idiots believe in what tabloids say, I'd like to say that it's those same idiots who cast votes in elections. In this case, the wife, should really be charged of slander, among with the tabloids, and perhaps loaded a truckfull of horse shit on. Well, I suppose that's the price you pay for having a dodgy (girlfriend or) wife in the modern society.

What comes to rapes, the current setup is often that charges may be pressed merely based on what a woman claims, without further evidence. I'm not saying that all women who claim to have been raped haven't, but I think there's a lot of people there who just have the hormones running on a gear too high, and collect a variety of bitterness to throw on someone. Regarding the quote on the original post. False allegiations are a serious thing, and may ruin a lot for an innocent person once the tabloids get involved. People who throw out false accusations in such serious issues as rape deserve to be DNA-banked, even though that sounds like such a mild punishment for it.
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Unread 16 Jan 2007, 20:47   #19
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mistwraith
Yes JammyJim .. use of date rape drugs is a huge concern as the drugged one rarely remembers enough to bring a prosectution and usually spends years having flashbacks until the full extent of the night in question becomes clear

the raper in cases like this is more likely to be found innocent.
Except that it was discivered (by blood testing) that use of rohypnol and 'date rape' drugs was an over hyped myth created by the media.

but do feel free to carry on promulgating a lie ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mistwraith

And also go some way to prevent *rich* people paying off accusers, so false claims can be prosecuted.
Oh look.

Another lie.

I see we've found a nice new hobby.
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Unread 16 Jan 2007, 22:15   #20
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

A 14 year old girl once tried to rape me after I left a club
I was totally wasted and she decided to take advantage of that by putting her hand in my pants

Luckily I managed to get away in time

I can't really remember it very well anymore, because I was proberbly also drugged
but it sure was traumatizing

true story



anyway ontopic:
if it was proven that she lied, then justice was served
I don't think the juridical system should be used to demean anyone, not even girls that make up false allegations

If a girl happends to actually be raped then she would risk being humiliated again if they don't have enough evidence to get someone convicted
If it's gonna happen then anonymity should only be lifted when the case is really transparent imo
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Unread 16 Jan 2007, 23:57   #21
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alessio
If a girl happends to actually be raped then she would risk being humiliated again if they don't have enough evidence to get someone convicted
If it's gonna happen then anonymity should only be lifted when the case is really transparent imo

Refering to the real life incident I just elaborated, what do you think are the victim's rights after he's been dragged to court, humiliated, and possibly mutilated by tabloids because of what - false accusations? As much as I despise people who commit such acts, and as much as I feel the rapists need to made responsible for their crimes - I also believe that there needs to be enhanced anonymity protection until the person has been prooven quilty. In modern society, merely being charged of something can stigmatize you for good.
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Unread 17 Jan 2007, 00:42   #22
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tietäjä
Refering to the real life incident I just elaborated, what do you think are the victim's rights after he's been dragged to court, humiliated, and possibly mutilated by tabloids because of what - false accusations? As much as I despise people who commit such acts, and as much as I feel the rapists need to made responsible for their crimes - I also believe that there needs to be enhanced anonymity protection until the person has been prooven quilty. In modern society, merely being charged of something can stigmatize you for good.
I think he should sue the tabloids, and perhaps the girl, for the damage they caused
I don't know if he has the right to do that in the UK, but they should pay for the damage they caused in cash imo
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Unread 20 Jan 2007, 22:55   #23
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nodrog
Despite sensationalism on both sides, rape is no different from any other form of assault and shouldnt be treated differently from other criminal charges.
Rape IS different from other forms of assault, and individual cases differ as well. But the same is true of most type of assult. A stabbing is different from a slap, kidnapping and torturing someone is different from kneeing someone in the balls and nicking their mobile phone. But on the level of the continued suffering inflicted on the victim even after the actual incident I would say it warrants different treatment, but the same is true of someone who has been (e.g.) stalked or anyone who will suffer if normal 'justice' procedure is followed. But this doesn't really matter except when you're thinking about severity of sentencing, and looking after the victims, like in victim/witness protection schemes.

I think that there are important differences from the point of view of anonymity. The stigma associated with being accused of rape, and also of having been raped, means that you are effectively punishing someone just by releasing their names. Therefore, I would suggest the following: All accusers and accused should remain anonymous. If found guilty, the accused is named. If not, then both stay anonymous. If the innocent party wants to accuse the woman of making a false claim, then there is a separate trial for this. If she is found guilty of fabricating the story, then she is named and punished. If not, they both remain anonymous.

Doesn't that sound reasonable?
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Unread 21 Jan 2007, 02:12   #24
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Re: Rape: should liers lose the right to anonymity?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alessio
I think he should sue the tabloids, and perhaps the girl, for the damage they caused
I don't know if he has the right to do that in the UK, but they should pay for the damage they caused in cash imo
Oh, an upgrade.

He lost his job as the head secretary of the Finnish Coalition party, and he's not going to get a ministry post or any special tasks should he be elected after all. So, what's this worth? 500k euros? Does that even suffice when your political career, the career you've been working for your life, is probably ruined beyond recognition over false accusations?

Oh yeah. And regarding the woman. It's estimated she earned around 40-50k euros alone by selling made up stories to the tabs. Pretty ace, huh.
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