Tuesday, 22 May 2007

Barrister: Gang Rape Girl was "Glad of the Attention"

by Helen Jones

The Daily Mirror published a story - 'Gang Rape Girl was Glad of the Attention' by Robert Stansfield on May 18th 2007

"A TEENAGE girl who claims she was gang raped by three 13-year-old boys was overweight and would have been "glad of the attention", a barrister told a court yesterday. The schoolgirl and her friend, both 16, have told how the boys, two of whom have since turned 14, mugged them for their phones then raped them repeatedly in a park while filming the ordeal on a mobile. But Sheilagh Davies, defending the boy of 13, insisted the girls consented to sex. She told the jury one of the girls, who gave evidence by video link, had "slimmed down a lot" since the incident on November 23 last year."

The barrister, Sheilagh Davies, has made unsupported allegations about the character and the actions of the rape complainant. The complainants dress-size has no bearing on this case at all and this is little more than another example of the mobilization of rape myths to attack the credibility of a rape complainant.

With cases such as these it is little wonder that the conviction rate in rape stands at a pitiful 5.2% in England and Wales . It is our duty to complain about the treatment of women by agents of the (so-called) justice system if women are to ever receive justice through the courts. There is a complaints mechanism and we encourage everyone who feels aggrieved by this case to complain.

The Bar Standards Board was established in January 2006. They are the independent regulatory board of the Bar Council, with responsibility for regulating barristers called to the Bar in England and Wales . They take decisions independently and in the public interest. They publish a Code of Conduct that barristers must abide by, and takes action where there is evidence that the Code has been breached and/or professional standards have not been maintained. The Code of Conduct sets demanding standards for barristers to meet and they rely on members of the public to bring to attention any potential breaches. Making a complaint costs nothing.

The website has a downloadable complaints form and guidance notes about how to do this.

Further details:
Complaints Department,
The Bar Standards Board,
289-293 High Holborn,
London WC1V 7HZ
Telephone: 020 7611 1444
Fax: 020 7611 1342


At 22 May 2007 at 21:14 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Glad to see this being tackled

At 9 July 2007 at 21:40 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I feel compelled to write concerning this case, as i have had first hand experience in court as "the witness" to my own rape. the way it was dealt with was disgusting and nothing short of barbaric. i moved to England thinking the laws on rape were better for the attacked, i was wrong. too many women and girls are made to feel like shit because of what has happened, and then justice fails. something has to be done for these people and how lawyers, barristers and judges look at the cases. i do realise how difficult it can be for the judges, and that is why there should be a counsellor there just for the victims, to stand up for them to these ignorant people who say they know more.

At 21 September 2007 at 11:29 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

My daughter was recently raped and is having extreme trouble coming to terms with what has happened to her. She has refused to be examined and refused to video statement as she has no faith in what will happen when she gets to court. I have extreme anxieties about getting her the help she needs which is almost non existent. Does anyone know of any help agencies that deal only with teen rape victims?


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