Bill Roache – Not Guilty of all counts

Bill-Roache-main__1741753a

Introduction

Bill Roache, the 81 year old actor better known to millions of TV viewers as Ken Barlowe was today (6th February 2014) found not guilty of the five remaining counts he faced.

Charges

Mr Roache stood trial on two allegations of rape and five of indecent assault. He was originally charged with two rapes of a 15 year old girl in 1967, before five charges were added of indecent assault against four different complainants aged between 11 and 16 between 1965 and 1968.

One of the allegations of indecent assault was dismissed at the end of the Prosecution case because “the witness was not giving evidence that it did happen, she was giving evidence that she was thinking it did happen“.

Mr Roache gave evidence and denied the offending, stating that he did not know any of the complainants, had never met them, and had never behaved inappropriately or illegal with anyone aged under 16.

Maximum sentences

For indecent assault, as the offences were committed on woman prior to 16 Sept 1985 the maximum sentence would have been five years if the girl was under 13, two years otherwise.

For rape the maximum sentence would have been life imprisonment.

What happens now?

The presumption of innocence means that Mr Roache is free to carry on with his life and is innocent of the charges that he faced.

We say that as there have already been people on twitter (some of whom seem to be journalists and should know better) saying that Mr Roache “got away with” something which is potentially libellous.

In the same vein, the fact that there was an acquittal does not equate to the jury stating as a fact that the complainants were liars. That was a question they were not asked, and by their verdict they have not answered.

For this reason, there is no suggestion that the complainants will be investigated by the police (let alone prosecuted) for the evidence that they gave, or wasting police time, or anything of that nature.

Mr Roache will have paid a substantial amount of money (probably six figures) towards his defence. Despite being found not guilty, he won’t be able to get this money back.

Should he have been prosecuted?
There is a debate to be had about whether someone can have a fair trial of allegations dating back 40 years so as in this case (and if so then how best to achieve one). This case will no doubt add to the discussion.

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About Dan Bunting

I'm a lawyer who works for myself. Legal geek, maths freak, general dullard and jack of all trades. Here’s a few views on law and occasional musings on life. Usual caveats about not relying on anything I say etc applies.

85 thoughts on “Bill Roache – Not Guilty of all counts

  1. duncanheenan

    I can understand the argument that alleged victims of rape etc., may keep quiet at the time because of fear of the accused, or fear of disapproval, but to wait 40 years, and then come forward, puts serious question mark over the motives of the accuser as well as the credibility of the evidence.
    I hope the world believes Mr Roach, as the jury did.

    Reply
  2. drewinvestigates

    A great day for British Justice. So good to see that the jury has seen through the lies of those that constantly raise stories of sexual crimes from fantasy to claim huge wads of compensation from the criminal compensation bureau. and ultimately from us the taxpayer.
    Congratulations William I knew from the outset that you weren’t guilty sir

    Reply
  3. Liberte, Egalite, Sororite

    I believe he did it but too much time has elapsed for it to be proved another great day for rapists and rape supporters business as usual.

    Reply
      1. Liberte, Egalite, Sororite

        Nice to see that you can frame a question civilly Duncan this is progress. My reasons: why would women who were unknown to each other make allegations of this sort, were they all hell bent on revenue, revenge, 15 minutes of fame, why would they put themselves through a court case at this stage in their lives, some were in their sixties I believe, and knowing too how difficult it is to secure a conviction, in any case, in rape cases without the historical element. Why does any man write to a 14 year old, who is not his daughter, and encourage her into correspondence with him and why, which was not seen by the jury because it was considered “prejudicial” to the accused, does a man brag about having over a 1000 lovers and being unable to control his sexual urges. In my view not prejudicial but pertinent to the character of the accused. It led me to believe there was a case to answer and that the CPS made the correct decision. That I disagree with the jury is based on the above, personal experience of the wolf in sheep’s clothing and a lifetime of observing men in and out of the sexual arena and how they conduct themselves.

      2. duncanheenan

        It seems that your view is based on speculation and personal experiences well outside this actual case. You can not say that just because some men are bad that all men are bad. That’s why there is a trial process.
        Not all men are rapists, even though a very few are.

      3. Andrew

        Well, L-E-S, an urge to sex with consenting adults is not an urge to what Mr Roache was accused of.

        The jury (persons of both genders) heard the whole of the evidence, not just the sensational bits which the press choose to print, and were not satisfied beyond reasonable doubt. Maybe they would have been satisfied to the civil standard; we shall never know.

        There is of course no prospect of civil action. Limitation expired three years after the alleged event or full age. This is not like the case of the attempted rapist who won the lottery where time was extended; Mr Roache has been readily traceable and “good for the money” for many decades now. As far as the law is concerned the matter is over.

  4. YorkshireLawStudent

    As he has been found not guilty by a jury will this lead to the women who accused him facing charges for false allegations and wasting police time? If he did commit these offences and there was a lack of supportive evidence for the prosecution to prove beyond reasonable doubt he had done them should the CPS have brought this case to court, it is a very difficult situation and whilst allegations of rape should be treated as one of the most serious crimes that can be committed we should as a society look at anonymity for suspects untill their proven guilty in a court of law as these allegations will allways follow around Mr. Roach.

    Reply
    1. drewinvestigates

      Whilst I see where the comments of the Yorkshire law student are coming from, I think it is important to realise and accept that there are a great deal of liars and fantasists out there that fabricate stories after many years purely to destroy others reputations and ultimately gain fame and claim compensation from us, the taxpayer!!
      Those that brought these allegations should now be prosecuted for wasting police time and made to pay every penny of the courts costs from the trial.
      Stop just assuming that those accused are guilty and concentrate on those guilty of slander and defamation of innocent people’s characters

      Reply
      1. Liberte, Egalite, Sororite

        Kirk Reid acquitted of rape went on to assault 70+ other women, Harbinder Khatkar was acquitted and then proceeded rape/assault six other women on the day he was acquitted including forcing his way into one victims’ home and raping her in front of her child – female, Ian Huntley accused several times of sex with under aged girls never charged – the rest is history. Stuart Hall stood on the steps of the court and called his victims liars. Ched Evans convicted of rape his victims persecuted by his supporters until she was forced to leave her home town. Rapists, lie and walk free all the time let’s here you chant for them to be charged with wasting police time, with slander and perjury for it. Or continue with your rape apologist rhetoric which allows rapists to walk free time and time and time again and their victims to be hounded.

      2. drewinvestigates

        In response to this comment, you are another one that does not read or understand what is before you. Ched Evans and others similar to him had a long history of CONTINUED sexual attacks of abuse, sexual assault and rape. This case of William Roache is a totally different thing, this is historic allegations raised over 50 years later on the back of allegations against the late Jimmy Saville. There is no evidence of sexual offending since the dates of the allegations that were laid before Roache and evidence will show that sex offenders don’t just offend and then stop with no further history. If you are happy to comment please ensure that you are informed and aware of all the facts first. There is a total difference between the cases you raised and the case of William Roache

  5. Liberte, Egalite, Sororite

    to Drewinvestigates I will comment as I see fit and whether your like it or not is irrelevant. Go back to rape apologism you’re better at it.

    Reply
    1. drewinvestigates

      I didn’t suggest that you should not comment I merely explained that you should understand the difference between a serial sex offender and historic false allegations

      Reply
      1. YorkshireLawStudent

        to clarify on the above comments, I am merly suggesting anonymity for those accused of sexual offences, if they are found guilty of course they should face the harshest of punishments, And in regards to this case it is not common that a trial will come up with 40 years passing since the events occured, from the information made public so far the evidence given by the witnesses does seem to point to the fantasist idea (one of the witnesses claimed Johnny briggs warned her about him but he was not working on the show at that point, once again this is according to the media i am not saying it is fact) however on that I will hold my judgement till the case file is made public. Yes any allegation of rape should be investigated thoroughly yet even those who have a past history are entitled to a fair trial, which I doubt Ken Roach got, how can you guarantee a fair hearing for a person who is very much in the public eye. If a person is aqquited whilst on trial for any crime regardless of how vile the accusations are or their past history they are Innocent IN THE EYES OF THE LAW, is this moral or just, to me no however we can not lock people up for the suspicion that cannot be proven. please dont assume my comments are “rape apologism” as that is a horrible term that is not the suggestion I or drewinvestigates were making at least to my understanding anyway

    2. duncanheenan

      I see you are still condemning all men as ‘rapists’, Sisterhood (or whatever your latest alias is). It would be equally fallacious to condemn all women as brazen gold diggers, just because some are. Your sisters in this case, tried at length by a jury including women, found that on the facts presented, the women were lying. I think you need to condemn some of your ‘sisters’ for vicariously destroying the credibility of others who may have a valid case.
      Not all men are rapists, and not all women are saintly victims. Judge each case on its merits. That’s what the jury did with William Roach, and found him innocent.

      Reply
      1. duncanheenan

        That is a nonsense ‘argument’. If there is sufficient evidence to prosecute, a rapist it should be brought forward in a timely fashion, not have the accuser leave it for decades until any evidence or testimony is useless, and then only prosecute it because it is the current fashion to cry rape and hope for large sums of money and notoriety. Rapists would not feel more secure knowing that they could be prosecuted for, say 30 years or so before the SOL applied.

  6. hindsight18

    I feel very uncomfortable with historical allegations. Society is much different now than it was 40 years ago when as a young woman one had to fight off unwanted touching particularly in the workplace. I fail to see how alleged victims can demonstrate beyond a reasonable doubt that offences were committed against them. I have never been on a jury nor am I a lawyer but worry that because of lack of evidence, or confusing evidence because of the time that has elapsed some may base their verdict on what they “feel” towards alleged victim and alleged perpetrator.

    Since Saville we have spent an inordinate amount of police time investigating these cases and bringing them to trial. We cannot undo past failings by police and prosecuting authorities which appears to me to be the basis of all this activity. I hope alleged victims were properly warned about the difficulties of pursuing such prosecutions. Also sexual predators do not just offend for a short period as it is something they continue with throughout their lives regardless of age – Saville is a classic example.

    Conflicting testimony, one charge being thrown out, alleged offences committed over 40 years ago, partner of one victim going to newspapers before police(financial gain) made this a difficult case. One wonders it the risk of a successful prosecution and the publc interest, as well as huge cost to the taxpayer have been served in this case.

    Reply
    1. drewinvestigates

      This is an excellent comment and I feel that it is really time that Britain had a statute of limitation similar to America in order to stop huge amounts of money being spent on investigations and trials all those years later
      Historic cases are very difficult to judge but I am pleased to see that you make a point sexual offenders /predators don’t just offend then not re-offend for the next 40+ years, particularly in the cases of offending gainst young people and children.

      Reply
      1. Liberte, Egalite, Sororite

        Yes, I’ll rape someone and then lay low until the statute of limitations is up. I’ll even tell the police who I’ve raped and where I raped them and how. Once the time is up I shall reappear secure in the knowledge I’ve gotten away home and dry. Christ!

  7. YorkshireLawStudent

    maybe the statute of limitations should not be for allegations made, for example if the offence had been reported 40 years ago but nothing was done about it then it could be prosecuted when the person accused or suspected was found or new evidence found but if 40 years have passed with no allegation then maybe a statute of limitations should apply.

    Reply
    1. drewinvestigates

      I have to agree with this point if allegations have been made years before and not dealt with at the time that is fine but if there has been no allegation in the first place for such long periods then it should be made impossible to compalin

      Reply
      1. Andrew

        If there is to be a statute of limitations it is because the delay makes a fair trial impossible – and if it does, then it makes no difference whether or not there was a contemporaneous complaint.

        To be honest, I have never formed a firm view about this in nearly forty years in the law. I am clear of this: that judges should be far more ready to kick out a prosecution if in any given case the defendant would be hampered. That can arise if the complainant cannot state the precise date – no date, no alibi which might have been conclusive – or even if there is a precise date but the defendant cannot be expected to remember where he was that day or potential witnesses are untraceable or dead. In such a case to allow the case to go on is just plain wrong.

      2. hindsight18

        I agree. Absolute nonsense to make a complaint 40 years later when one cannot recall all the information required – date, time etc. I am for a statute of limitations for all offences with the exception of murder.

  8. Andrew

    The usual suspects having the usual go at each other.

    Mr Roache has been acquitted and must be treated as not guilty. End of, as my son would say.

    Reply
    1. drewinvestigates

      I really feel that there is little or no point in commenting on blogs like this as the usual comments are made by folk with blinkers on. Justice and trials were put in place for a reason and that is to ensure that the innocent are protected and if they are innocent they are found “not guilty” that means that they have NOT committed the crime!!
      So far as the suggestion of a statute of limitations is concerned there is a valid reason for this as evidence cannot be accurate unless it is written or in some way physical after 40 years or so.
      As several of us slightly better informed have said in our comments a rapist rarely if ever offends once or twice then doesn’t re-offend anymore over such a long period, that is the major difference in this case in comparison to others that have been mentioned

      Reply
    2. Liberte, Egalitie, Sororite

      Yes just Harbinder Khatkar was acquitted. End of. Except it wasn’t on the day of his acquittal it was the beginning of a prolific day of sexual assault and rape which he did to at least six women. One of whom he raped in front of her child. End of. Not for women it isn’t.

      Reply
      1. Andrew

        Not a gender issue. Some burglars get acquitted – inevitably – and do it again, and again, and again, and their victims may be of either gender – as indeed may they.

        By “End of” I mean only that that is the end of the case. I don’t imagine a man of 81 going off on a violent sexual spree which is how Khatkar got caught – do you? It is the tragedy of that case that if he had breathed a sigh of relief and said “Never again” and meant it – and I can imagine some guilty-but-acquitted defendants, not only in rape, doing that – the later victims would not have suffered and he would not have gone to prison. Which would be better, even if it meant that the earlier victims did not see him go down. Wouldn’t it?

  9. Liberte, Egalitie, Sororite

    Maybe there should be a statute of limitations on murder too, on GBH, theft all crimes.

    Reply
      1. Liberte, Egalitie, Sororite

        Murder should never be allowed to go unpunished but rape can be. Why? Is it because most rape victims are female and most rapists are male?

      1. Liberte, Egalitie, Sororite

        Why does it matter whether the rapist is prolific or not. Father’s rape their daughters and no-one else for example. It’s the rape that’s the crime not the how many victims surely.

      2. Andrew

        L-E-S: the difference between murder and rape is that murder is more serious – even more serious – than rape or any other crime.

        And while I know you are concerned about man-murders-woman cases, and so am I, there are probably more man-murders-man cases. Most murder victims are male; but such cases are less interesting to the media.

    1. Andrew

      Joke all you wish: there is an important point here. This is not a failure for the CPS. If the CPS run a prosecution properly and call the evidence they can, but a jury or a bench of magistrates are not satisfied beyond reasonable doubt, that is not failure; it is justice being done. The CPS fails when cases are kicked out because they have fouled up, brought cases which should never have been brought, not complied with their obligations in respect of disclosure and the like.

      Reply
      1. Tracey McMahon (@MAFTC)

        Andrew,

        I don’t know what you’re reading but there was no joke intended at all. I do agree, the course of justice has tread its path. Bill Roach has been cleared of all charges. He remains an innocent man as he was throughout the whole trial. Regardless of public opinion in a “victim-led” society, Bill Roach is an innocent man in the eyes of the law.

      2. brianriley

        The media frenzy of the on going trial and his costs he has incurred for his defence surely can be argued where the loser is here. Anonymity should only be used for those in Alcoholics Anonymous.

      3. hindsight18

        I don’t know about CPS doing such a good job in this case. On the balance of probabilities, it would seem very difficult to me to prove a case from 40 years ago. All cases have to be tested against the likelihood of success given the high cost to the taxpayer of a trial. I think it is about £3,500 a day in the Crown Court which does not take into account legal fees. I am sorry but I believe most historical cases will be extremely difficult to prove as no one person can accurately recall what occurred some 40 years ago.

      4. duncanheenan

        Not only does the CPS have to consider the prospects of conviction, but they are also supposed to consider the public good in pursuing a prosecution. I fail to see the public good in this case.
        There is an element of the CPS’s decision making which resembles walking in to a barber’s shop and asking “do I need a haircut?”. The CPS is paid for out of public funds, and people who work in the public sector and are not subject to market pressures tend to be less cost conscious than others, and more keen on job creation, IMHO.

  10. brianriley

    Historic falls into the realms of history & memory and should never be able to resurrect wrongs when one’s mind may play tricks. Tricks should be in the arena of card games when one can be underhand in order to win. Historic crimes surely is like having your teeth removed before one has ever experienced toothache.

    Reply
  11. patrickhadley

    I see in today’s newspapers that the defence barrister made two applications for a re-trial during the judge’s summing up and made a list of 30 points which she said should not have been put before the jury in the summing up.

    That seems very unusual to me. The judge denied the request, but I expect that had Roache been convicted there would have been an appeal based on prejudice from the judge.

    Reply
  12. patrickhadley

    The issue of statute of limitations is not really the point, as I see it. If someone committed a rape forty years ago and new evidence, such as DNA, is found to identify him, then why should he not be prosecuted?

    What we have with Bill Roache, and similar cases, is I believe, an abuse of process. Those who accused him knew who he was and where he was, and had no reason at all not to bring charges against him in a timely manner. If Roache had been accused soon after the alleged offences took place the evidence for and against him would have been much more valuable. Delaying making an accusation for many years seems to me to be against the interests of justice. How can someone defend themselves against an accusation based on no evidence other than a fifty year old recollection?

    Reply
      1. patrickhadley

        If the clothes of a rape victim had been kept in an evidence bag, and forty years later thanks to advances in technology it were possible to analyse DNA on the clothes, which led to the identification of a suspect, then it would be wrong, IMHO, to have a statute of limitations on rape meaning that he could not be charged.

        My view is that introducing a statute of limitations for rape would be wrong, but that the courts should apply the existing principle of “abuse of process” when an historic allegation which could have been made many years ago, is brought made with no new evidence at all. Even if one accepts that the majority of historic allegations are true, there is great scope for injustice in them.

  13. Andrew

    Decades ago before DNA technology there would ahve been no reason to preserve the clothes!

    Reply
    1. Liberte, Egalite, Sororite

      Suppose photographs of abuse or video/film evidence came to light of the abuse/rape. A witness came forward or any number of other scenarios, seen as we are for the time being discounting DNA, a statute of limitations would actively work against justice for the victim how could they be just or right?

      Reply
      1. Andrew

        It’s a fair point, and as I have said before I waver on the question of limitation in serious crime. Photographs coming to light would raise the question of why they did not come to light much sooner; a witness coming forward would raise the question of why s/he waited so long. Perhaps there should be no formal limitation – but a more vigorous application of abuse of process where passage of time makes the process unfair to the defendant – who is as in all cases to be presumed innocent.

        Years ago I acted for a chap accused of rape whose complainant died before trial (unrelated causes) and who therefore walked.Was that fair to anyone whom (if guilty) he might rape in future?

  14. Pingback: No Case to Answer | UK Criminal Law Blog

  15. Liberte, Egalite, Sororite

    Andrew re: “an urge to sex with consenting adults is not an urge to what Mr Roache was accused of” was not my point. Men do not know how to take no for an answer when it comes to sex, additionally the erect penis appears to have neither sense nor conscience and when it and it’s owner overstep the mark and rape or sexually assault. The rapist/abuser/paedophile has to justify his abhorrent behaviour, in his own head space somehow, this he does this by: blaming the victim – she (or he) was asking for it, she looked older than she was (even when she was seen by him wearing a school uniform and or he was her teacher), she led me on by (insert any number of preposterous justifications here – grey area, buyers remorse), she said no but she meant yes, I believed that she was consenting, I can scarcely believe this is allowed as a defence to this day in court what a load of utter b*llocks, she’s a liar (aka crying rape), she’s doing it for money, ad nauseum

    Reply
    1. YorkshireLawStudent

      May I just say that yes Some men do not know how to take No for an answer, however I would hope the vast majority of men will stop when a woman says no, . And you are right some rapists try to justify their behaviour in any way they can to avoid the punishment for their crime, Not every Man is a rapist or a potential rapist, using you’re logic, mothers are statistically far more likely to physically abuse a child than a father, does that mean all women “do not know not to hit a child”.
      And According to the US DOJ there were more Male victims of rape in the US than Women (not instances or mutiple attacks, just Victims http://www.outsidethebeltway.com/men-outnumber-women-among-american-rape-victims
      Rape is not a “Man Rapes woman” only crime it is a “Rapist Rapes Victim” crime, yes more women in society are the victims of rape and I am of the belief that someone convicted of rape should be stopped from harming another victim again.

      Reply
    2. Andrew

      L-S-E: I don’t want to turn this into an arena for men to boast about their sexual prowess or their sexual good behaviour, but I have the experience, which you do not, of being male, and I have to say that I have sometimes had to and have accepted No, not necessarily verbally expressed, for an answer, whatever my disappointment, and on other occasions have accepted Yes, also not necessarily verbally expressed, for an answer, I hope to the mutual pleasure of both persons concerned (I was never into three-or-more-somes but I have nothing against those who are if all present consent). And I don’t believe that I am more or less virtuous than the bulk of my gender.

      Now, as to the erect penis having no conscience. First, some men do plead guilty to sexual offences.

      Second, to turn to the “excuses”. You will be aware that since 2002 a reasonable mistake as to age is a defence, and so it should be. If the complainant went willingly into a bar where you have to be 18 to be there at all, for example, or if she claimed she was in the sixth form, there might well be a reasonable error, and that’s before you get into the question of appearance and clothing. I don’t have much time for adult men who seek their pleasure with girls who are sixteen, seventeen years old, but you have to fix the age of consent somewhere; sixteen here, fifteen in Denmark, seventeen in both parts of Ireland, and I don’t suppose that stops many sexual acts there involving girls of sixteen.

      If she was wearing school uniform and he was her teacher that is of course another and abominable matter. The age of consent in the case of teacher and pupil is eighteen and that excludes all but a small number of sixth-formers – perhaps it would have been better to say that consent should be inadmissible while she was still a pupil at his school. Of course that would not help in the case of the pupil with a crush on Sir who has intercourse with him after sixteen and after she has left his school, but you can only go so far in protecting anyone against their own folly.

      “I believed she was consenting” – I agree, an ugly defence, but if it is true, it’s a defence. Consent to sex is not set out in a written document signed in front of witnesses, and it’s a strange world out there. The man who runs this defence and loses, and they usually do, also loses the discount for the guilty plea which amounts to the extra consecutive punishment which I know you think should apply to anyone who denies rape and is convicted.

      “She’s a liar” – do you seriously think that that can never happen? In rape as in all offences, allegations are sometimes made and taken seriously and the complainant is sucked into it and feels she has to go on. In a case I chaired in the mags’ court, obviously not rape but sexual assault, I have seen a complainant of seventeen under cross-examination (by a woman, it usually is) being asked “You made all this up, didn’t you?” and the face cracked and she started crying “I’m sorry, I’m sorry” and out it all came, it was all a misunderstanding, she never meant for all this to happen, she was sorry, she was sorry . . . I hope she wasn’t prosecuted; she was really too young and stupid to be held accountable, but it’s just as well we have a trial process which allows defence counsel to cross-examine, because if this man had been convicted we would have packed him off to the Crown Court for sentence. She had been lying and that’s the end of it. Since we or a jury can only convict if we or they are sure beyond reasonable doubt that she is not, there will be cases where the doubt leads to an acquittal.

      Reply
    3. duncanheenan

      Not all under age girls are the innocent angels you seem to think they are. Nor are all under age girls ‘grown-up’ and sensible in their thinking.

      Reply
      1. Andrew

        Duncan: as to your first sentence, you are right. Some are not. Some are in a state of mind which had they been over the age of consent would qualify as consent. But that is a matter which goes to sentence; and in the case of a very young defendant to the decision to prosecute or not. A lad of seventeen with no previous record should not be prosecuted because he had intercourse with a girl of fifteen who was in that sense consenting.

        As to your second sentence, was “under” an error for “over” which would make more sense? If so you are again right, but a man who has intercourse with a naive and foolish (but consenting) sixteener may be beneath contempt but (assuming there was no position of trust involved) it’s like my case of the recent school leaver who goes willingly to bed with her former teacher – it’s not a matter for the criminal law. The age of consent is necessarily arbitrary and will leave some below it who, if all concerned will pardon the expression “know what it’s for” and some above it who are vulnerable and suggestible. That’s life. Some seventeens are fit to vote and some eighteens are not!

      2. duncanheenan

        I meant ‘under’, as it was in response to Sisterhood / Egalite….’s assertions about under age girls being vulnerable to the attentions of older men. My point is that some of them are capable of doing, (and denying) wicked, stupid, wanton and immature things. This is, in law, no excuse for an older man to take advantage of it for sexual gratification or exploitation of course. But sisterhood seemed to be trying to give the impression that there was never any contributory sexual or mischievous input from the youngster. It is a problem that teachers and others who work with minors face all the time.
        Some people slip from the standards expected of them, but I object to Sisterhood’s blanket condemnation of all men, just because a few slip. I also find her constant pejorative references to penises says more about her own state of mind than about penises.

  16. Liberte, Egalite,

    Wanting to believe a teenage girl is all knowing and sexually aware is the wishful thinking of the penis without conscience trying to square it’s owners abhorrent desires. I remember well our family minister who propositioned my elder sister just after her 16th birthday. Physically she looked older than her age however as his children were similar ages to us and we all went to the same school he knew this was not true. The paedo was waiting for it to be legal to make his move. The erect penis has no sense nor conscience. He was eventually defrocked for other misdemeanors. The minefield girls have to walk from puberty to womanhood is littered with men like this. Predatory and creepy.

    Reply
    1. Andrew

      All you say about this abhorrent cleric is true, but in the nature of things an age of consent has to mean what it says – your sister did not, I take it, consent, and that’s the end of it.

      Predatory and creepy he was; criminal he was not. From what you say he took great care not to be.

      If being a complete and utter shit was an offence – well, you’d need a lot more prisons and not all of them would be for men. There are many ways of being a shit and most of them are equal opps.

      Reply
      1. duncanheenand

        You say “All you say about this abhorrent cleric is true”….
        Do you know that to be the case, or have you left out an important ‘If’ at the beginning?
        If you do know that to be the case I’d be interested to know how you know.

      2. Andrew

        Duncan at 7.00 p.m. today: If you want to be picky, recast my first words to read:

        If (as I assume) the facts about this cleric are as you have stated them then he was abhorrent and all the ill you say of him is correct; but in the nature of things . . .

        And stop pretending you don’t understand the obvious.

        And just as a matter of curiosity, why does your image show you with no shirt but your goggles on?

        L-E-S: sorry to append this as a a reply to your valuable contribution rather than to Mr Heenan’s crappy one: the system did not give me the option.

      3. duncanheenand

        Thanks Andrew.
        I was not being pick or point scoring, the question had a reason.
        You have claimed to have about 40 years experience in The Law, so I was surprised that you appeared to be unconditionally condemning an alleged immoral man on the sole say-so of an anonymous internet poster. She claims this to be a real case, not a made up example, so I thought you would treat it as such. Given that you seem to readily accept her version of events, and the parts played by both the man and her sister, I wondered if you had some other source of information, such as direct contact with ‘Sisterhood’. I am comforted that, though you have not denied this, you have implied that you have not, by including the all important ‘If’ in your redraft.
        As for why ‘ why does your image show you with no shirt but your goggles on?’ It is because I was not wearing a shirt, and I was wearing pearl diver’s goggles when the photograph was taken. Doubtless this will beg further questions I will anticipate them rather than wait for you to ask the wrong question again. If you look closely you will see I am wearing a swimming hat and am also covered in water in the photograph. This is because I had just got out of the water from swimming when the photograph was taken. I used this photograph as it was relevant to when I first signed up to Google (whose account is used to post here), as the purpose then was to join a Channel Swimmers group. I have never bothered to change the avatar since, as I see nothing wrong in not wearing a shirt, and wearing goggles. You see, I am a real person, not afraid to use my real name and identity. http://www.dover.uk.com/channelswimming/swimmers/548/Duncan+Heenan/photos/1/
        I hope that helps. Or maybe in your considered legally experienced opinion, it’s just another crappy post?

      4. Andrew

        I remain of the view that the “If” was obviously to be implied, but you read it how you wish.

        Enjoy your swimming.

      5. duncanheenan

        What may be ‘obvious’ to you is not necessarily obvious to others. What I said was genuine, whether or not you care to think.
        How many times in Court to people say ‘it’s obvious’, only to be told by the judge that nothing is ‘obvious’ in Court, and has to be stated or proven? How many legal documents have been argued over because some draftsman has made a mistake and claimed ‘it’s obviously implied’. I have the luxury of being a layman as regards The Law, and can be use terms like ‘obviously implied’ and be forgiven. Maybe I took your own claims of legal experience too seriously. I apologise.

  17. Liberte, Egalite, Sororite

    Andrew did not use the word “if” it’s true and this has never been tested in a court of law therefore that means it didn’t happen if you have time and you know how to look up defrockings, I don’t, you can look up details on the former Reverend Robinson Milward be my guest.

    And no my sister did not give her consent to the heavily breathing “whenever I am around you I can hardly look at you” man of god.

    Reply
    1. Andrew

      There are some crude creeps around, aren’t there?

      It’s not my position that it did not happen, even without looking up the Reverend; only, as I think you know, that it can’t be taken as proved.

      Reply
      1. Liberte, Egalite, Sororite

        The above wasn’t direct at you Andrew I should rise above it I know

    2. duncanheenan

      You assert it is true, and also that it didn’t happen.
      Any wonder that people get confused?
      If what you say is true, looking up Mr Milward’s record will not prove anything in your sister’s alleged case, as you have told us that he was defrocked for other reasons.

      Reply
      1. Andrew

        If I understand it right L-E-S is saying that Mr M DID proposition her sister but that her sister DID NOT fall for his advances.

        In which case he was a predatory but not criminal shit.

        And if I can understand it right, Duncan, so can you if you try.

      1. Andrew

        Try again without the Reverend and with the names between quotes. You won’t find evidence of defrocking but you will find evidence of his existence.

      2. duncanheenan

        It does not prove that the person Sisterhood claims exists exists, only that there are people in the world called Robinson Milward. You can put almost any name in to Google and come up with some hits. A defrocking of a minister, even one from a fringe ‘church’ is usually in the public domain and gets picked up by Google, so the lack of hits pushes the probability of the story’s truth in the wrong direction. Whilst absence of proof is not proof of absence, given her story, I would have expected it to have turned up easily on Google rather than not at all.
        I have never said that the story is not true, only that I was surprised at the alacrity with which you believed it and issued condemnations based solely on it, apparently.

      3. Liberte, Egalite, Sororite

        try harder
        arts.leeds.ac.uk/crp/files/2013/02/howard1987.pd
        “…I went to sit at the back. After the service nobody spoke to me. (26). Robinson Milward, now a Methodist minister in Stoke Newington told Anita Jackson …”

  18. Andrew

    Well, L-E-S, if you ever thought Duncan was being offensive to you because you are a woman you know better now: he is offensive without discrimination!

    Early start tomorrow: goodnight all.

    Reply
    1. duncanheenan

      I’m sorry for you if you find it offensive to have a mistake looked in to. No offence was intended, merely a search for the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
      I wish you a good night too.

      Reply
  19. Liberte, Egalite, Sororite

    Well Duncan we all have our cross to bear as they say. You can ring the Methodist Church tomorrow and enquire directly of them.

    Reply
    1. duncanheenan

      It is your cross, not mine. I have no need to prove this man exists or is guilty of anything. I have made no allegation.
      I suggest we just write it off as one of your ‘fire and forget’ assertions.

      Reply
      1. Liberte, Egalite, Sororite

        No I insist go for it and then will you be big enough to apologise. No I know the answer to that already.

      2. duncanheenan

        It was ‘Andrew”s comment I was seeking clarification on, not yours. I learned not to take you seriously long ago, but Andrew’s comments are usually more considered, which is why this one stood out.

      3. Liberte, Egalite, Sororite

        And if you have no need to prove he exists why are you trying hmm all very strange.

  20. Pingback: Could anonymity for the accused help the Prosecution? | Dan Bunting - A Life in the Bus Lane

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