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[DRAFT] The Treatment of those accused of Serious Offences,

Where WA members debate how to improve the world, one resolution at a time.

Should Serious offenders receive rehabilitative or punitive justice?

Rehabilitative
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Punitive
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Total votes : 30

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Heraswed
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[DRAFT] The Treatment of those accused of Serious Offences,

Postby Heraswed » Tue Mar 05, 2019 3:24 pm

The General Assembly,

    Recognising the possibility for bodily injury or fatality to befall the suspects or indeed perpetrators of serious crimes,

    Believing that we should take whatever action we can to prevent unnecessary suffering of any persons,

    Lauding the attempts of the GA to preserve the rights of persons accused of a crime such as:

      The right to a fair trial,

      The right to be considered innocent until proven guilty,

      The right to appeal,
    Understanding the risk posed by convicted offenders who have served their sentences to the public at large,

    Noting that false accusations of offences of a sexual or otherwise serious nature have the potential to ruin a person’s life, employment, education or relationships,

    Further Noting that this defamation often takes place before a person has been found guilty in a court of law,

Hereby,

    1. Defines a false accusation as an accusation which the accuser knew at the time of reporting, was untrue,

    2. Further Defines a serious crime as a crime which implicates the accused in one or more of the following events:

      a. The death of a person (whether intentional or accidental),

      b. The theft of an item of significant value,

      c. The injury of more than two people (the injury being significant enough to constitute assault in both cases),

      d. The crippling or otherwise permanent disabling of the body or mind of a person,

      e. Non-consensual sexual contact with the intention to violate a person's sexual autonomy;

    3. Requires member nations to provide optional anonymity to those people:
      a. Charged with serious offences,

      b. On trial for serious offences,

      c. Legally representing those above;

    4. Clarifies that this anonymity should apply only to the press and general public;

    5. Obligates member nations to criminalise the act of revealing the identity of a person who had opted for anonymity;

    6. Recommends that member nations criminalise the further publication of a revealed identity;

    7. Mandates that, in the case of false accusations, the accuser should serve a minimum sentence of the following:

      a. One half of the sentence (if defined temporally) the offender may have faced;

      b. One quarter of the difference between the subject's age and the life expectancy of the nation in question if the sentence was to life imprisonment or death;
    8. Further Clarifies that no sentence should be passed on an accuser without separate inquiry into their knowledge of the validity of their claim at the time of complaint;

    9. Further recommends that nations continue to conceal the identity of released offenders in order to allow their reintegration into society;

    10. Further mandates that additional protection is to be provided to serious offenders as they serve their sentence;

    11. Obligates that member nations require law enforcement officials to inform complainants of serious offences of this resolution and the implications thereof;

    12. Further Recommends that member nations implement a 'cooling off' period of 1 day (whatever length of time that may constitute) wherein a complainant(s) is at liberty to rescind their allegation without fear of prosecution.

    13. Suggests that member nations engage in rehabilitative measures such as:
      a. Therapy;

      b. Victim-Offender Dialogue;

      c. Family Group Conferencing;

      d. Circles of Support and Accountability.

The General Assembly,
    Recognizing the possibility for bodily injury or fatality to befall the suspects of sex crimes,

    Understanding the risk posed by offenders who have served their sentences to the public at large,

    Noting that false accusations of sexual offences have the potential to ruin a person’s life, employment, education and/or relationships,

Hereby,
    1. Defines a false accusation as an accusation which the accuser knew at the time of reporting, was untrue,

    2. Requires member nations to provide optional anonymity to those people:
      a. Charged with Sex offences,

      b. On trial for Sex offences,

      c. Legally representing those above;
    3. Requests that member nations criminalise the act of revealing the identity of a person who had opted for anonymity;

    4. Further Requests that member nations criminalise the further publication of a revealed identity;

    5. Mandates that, in the case of false accusations, the accuser should serve a minimum sentence of the following:

      a. One half of the sentence (if defined temporally) the offender may have faced;

      b. One quarter of the difference between the subject's age and the life expectancy of the nation in question if the sentence was to life imprisonment or death;
    6. Further requires that member nations make available, without need of request, the names and faces (and other defining features) of recently released sex offenders;

    7. Further mandates that additional protection is to be provided to sex offenders as they serve their sentence;

    8. Recommends that member nations require law enforcement officials to inform complainants of sexual offences of this resolution and the implications thereof;

    9. Further Recommends that member nations implement a 'cooling off' period of 1 day (whatever length of time that may constitute) wherein a complainant(s) is at liberty to rescind their allegation without fear of prosecution.

The General Assembly,
    Recognizing the possibility of bodily injury or fatality to befall the suspects of sex crimes due to the commonly recognised heinous nature of these crimes,

    Understanding the risk posed by offenders who have served their sentences to the public at large,

    Noting that false accusations of sexual offences have the potential to ruin a person’s life, employment, education and/or relationships,

    Defining a false accusation as an accusation which the accuser knew at the time of reporting, was untrue,
Hereby,

    1. Requires member nations to provide optional anonymity to those people:
      a. Charged with Sex offences,

      b. On trial for Sex offences,

      c. Legally representing those above;
    2. Requests that member nations criminalise the act of revealing the identity of a person who has opted for anonymity;

    3. Further Requests that member nations criminalise the further publication of a revealed identity;

    4. Mandates that, in the case of false accusations, the accuser should serve a minimum of ½ of the sentence the subject may have faced themselves;

    5. Further requires that member nations make available, without need of request, the names and faces (and other defining features) of recently released sex offenders;

    6. Further mandates that additional protection is to be provided to sex offenders as they serve their sentence;

    7. Recommends that member nations require law enforcement officials to inform complainants of this resolution and the implications thereof;

    8. Further Recommends that member nations implement a 'cooling off' period of 1 day (whatever length of time that may constitute) wherein a complainant(s) is a liberty to rescind their allegation without fear of prosecution.

5. Recommends that nations continue to conceal the identity of released sex offenders in order to allow their reintegration into society;
6. Suggests that member nations engage in rehabilitative measures such as:

    a. Therapy;
    b. Victim-Offender Dialogue;
    c. Family Group Conferencing;
    d. Circles of Support and Accountability.

OOC: I hope this hasn't been covered before, but please inform me if it has.
Critiques and suggestions are welcome.
Last edited by Heraswed on Wed Mar 20, 2019 5:48 am, edited 25 times in total.
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Postby Bananaistan » Tue Mar 05, 2019 3:27 pm

Mandates that, in the case of false accusations, the accuser should serve a minimum of ½ of the sentence the subject may have faced themselves;


"What's a false accusation?"
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Postby Tinfect » Tue Mar 05, 2019 3:54 pm

OOC:
Wonderful idea. Make it even more dangerous for victims to come forward; not only do they risk death threats, ruined careers, and media speculation on every moment of their life, and reliving the trauma in court, they also may go to prison!

What the hell made you think this was a good idea?
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Postby Falcania » Tue Mar 05, 2019 3:59 pm

Fantastic, a rapist's charter.

Heraswed wrote:4. Mandates that, in the case of false accusations, the accuser should serve a minimum of ½ of the sentence the subject may have faced themselves;


Explain in detail your justification for this.
Last edited by Falcania on Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Separatist Peoples » Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:17 pm

"You don't have the right to anonymity in a public proceeding. Trials are public to ensure transparency of procedure. Hiding proceedings, even in part, invites corruption."

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Postby Aclion » Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:55 pm

Tinfect wrote:OOC:
Wonderful idea. Make it even more dangerous for victims to come forward; not only do they risk death threats, ruined careers, and media speculation on every moment of their life, and reliving the trauma in court, they also may go to prison!

What the hell made you think this was a good idea?

unproven alligations=/=false alligations by that line of reasoning more then 99% of rape allegations are false.

Bananaistan wrote:
Mandates that, in the case of false accusations, the accuser should serve a minimum of ½ of the sentence the subject may have faced themselves;


"What's a false accusation?"

"An accusation... which is false."
Last edited by Aclion on Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Tinfect » Tue Mar 05, 2019 6:35 pm

Aclion wrote:unproven alligations=/=false alligations by that line of reasoning more then 99% of rape allegations are false.


OOC:
What the actual fuck are you on about. Like, genuinely, that response reads as a total non-sequitur to me.
Last edited by Tinfect on Tue Mar 05, 2019 6:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby New Bremerton » Tue Mar 05, 2019 8:17 pm

OOC: So the OP wants to protect the anonymity of accused sex offenders, only for their names and faces to be made readily available upon release? Interesting.
Last edited by New Bremerton on Tue Mar 05, 2019 8:18 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby American Pere Housh » Wed Mar 06, 2019 12:04 am

People seem to forget innocent until proven guilty. Unless there is evidence supporting the accusation, the one being accused is innocent. For example, Brett Kavanaugh and Clarence Thomas were both falsely accused of raping a women when there was no evidence whatsoever supporting the women's claim.
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Postby Kenmoria » Wed Mar 06, 2019 12:34 am

“I like this concept very much. However, as you can see, there will be quite a lot of opposition. For the moment, this has my support, though I recommend changing about clause 4, since it will be hard to do half of a death sentence of half of life imprisonment.”

(OOC: Also, GA resolutions aren’t good at handling Unicode, so the 1/2 sign might turn up as just a hashtag followed by numbers.)
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Postby Heraswed » Wed Mar 06, 2019 12:50 am

Falcania wrote:Fantastic, a rapist's charter.

Heraswed wrote:4. Mandates that, in the case of false accusations, the accuser should serve a minimum of ½ of the sentence the subject may have faced themselves;


Explain in detail your justification for this.


OOC: Now that I look back on it 1/2 may be excessive. Regardless, my justification is that a false allegation has the potential has the potential to entirely ruin a person's life, beyond that they may spend upwards of a decade in prison, they will likely lose jobs, relationships etcetera.
Secondly, it is very unlikely for a person to be prosecuted for false accusations. Only between 2% and 10% of reported sexual assault or rapes are thrown out in court. In order for the accuser to then be prosecuted, the police would have to investigate and the prosecution service deem there be sufficient evidence for a trial, and then they would have to win that trial. Only then would a person face the sentence, it's built in to a system which means that only those true offenders will suffer.
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Postby Heraswed » Wed Mar 06, 2019 12:55 am

Separatist Peoples wrote:"You don't have the right to anonymity in a public proceeding. Trials are public to ensure transparency of procedure. Hiding proceedings, even in part, invites corruption."


"Au contraire, almost every victim of sexual assault has the right to anonymity in the courts of most advanced nations. We're not discussing the concealment of proceedings, rather the concealment of identity, whether that be by the accused not appearing in court in person, or the accused appearing behind closed doors, either way this serves to protect them from a 'trial by media' as it were."
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Postby Heraswed » Wed Mar 06, 2019 1:00 am

New Bremerton wrote:OOC: So the OP wants to protect the anonymity of accused sex offenders, only for their names and faces to be made readily available upon release? Interesting.


OOC: When I put this up I was a bit iffy on the exact mechanics of the proposal, I was hoping that, by putting it up here, someone more imaginative then I may have thought of something.

IOC: "The purpose of their identity being released is to ensure that people can recognise potential threats to their children, to be clear, only the identity of those prosecuted should be revealed under this system, not those accused but found not guilty."
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Postby Heraswed » Wed Mar 06, 2019 1:10 am

Tinfect wrote:OOC:
Wonderful idea. Make it even more dangerous for victims to come forward; not only do they risk death threats, ruined careers, and media speculation on every moment of their life, and reliving the trauma in court, they also may go to prison!

What the hell made you think this was a good idea?

OOC: I'm not really sure what you mean, most victims of sexual assault have an automatic right to anonymity, media coverage is generally sympathetic and current feminist rhetoric calls for people to '#Believe her'. See here for the details on how specific the circumstances would have to be in order for an accuser to be prosecuted.
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Postby Falcania » Wed Mar 06, 2019 1:33 am

Heraswed wrote:
Falcania wrote:Fantastic, a rapist's charter.



Explain in detail your justification for this.


OOC: Now that I look back on it 1/2 may be excessive. Regardless, my justification is that a false allegation has the potential has the potential to entirely ruin a person's life, beyond that they may spend upwards of a decade in prison, they will likely lose jobs, relationships etcetera.
Secondly, it is very unlikely for a person to be prosecuted for false accusations. Only between 2% and 10% of reported sexual assault or rapes are thrown out in court. In order for the accuser to then be prosecuted, the police would have to investigate and the prosecution service deem there be sufficient evidence for a trial, and then they would have to win that trial. Only then would a person face the sentence, it's built in to a system which means that only those true offenders will suffer.


So to put it another way; if a victim of a non-sexual assault presses charges against their assailant, their assailant may be found guilty, and receive a sentence, or be found not guilty, and not receive a sentence.

But if a victim of a sexual assault presses charges against their assailant, their assailant may be found guilty, and receive a sentence, or be found not guilty, and then the victim receives a sentence?
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Postby Iciaros » Wed Mar 06, 2019 2:14 am

Falcania wrote:
So to put it another way; if a victim of a non-sexual assault presses charges against their assailant, their assailant may be found guilty, and receive a sentence, or be found not guilty, and not receive a sentence.

But if a victim of a sexual assault presses charges against their assailant, their assailant may be found guilty, and receive a sentence, or be found not guilty, and then the victim receives a sentence?


(OOC: This is what I'm most concerned about in this proposal, because what is the threshold to hold a 'false' accuser guilty? Obviously, just because someone is found 'not guilty' in court doesn't mean they actually didn't do it; it just means that there isn't enough proof to prove that the accused did it beyond reasonable doubt. It's essentially the court saying 'we can't be sure that this guy did it'. So it can't be that a not-guilty verdict for the accused automatically means a guilty verdict for the accuser. Logically, what would have to happen is that an accuser would have to have a separate trial to determine whether they lied, whether in court or in making a police report.

A description like this would seem that what you're describing under this resolution is actually perjury (lying under oath), or making a false police report, which are (I would imagine, in most jurisdictions) already crimes, warranting a separate trial. It would therefore seem that this resolution doesn't really do anything if this description is accurate, except control the punishment that member nations can administer for perjury/false reporting in the specific crime of sexual assault.

I would appreciate some clarifications if I'm wrong, but ultimately the above paragraph summarises my understanding of this proposal, and therefore it seems quite unnecessary.)
Last edited by Iciaros on Wed Mar 06, 2019 2:33 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Battlion » Wed Mar 06, 2019 2:29 am

New Bremerton wrote:OOC: So the OP wants to protect the anonymity of accused sex offenders, only for their names and faces to be made readily available upon release? Interesting.


OOC: This, I can understand why anonymity for sex offenders may be a valid proposal but it seems ludicrous to then reveal them when they’re meant to be rehabilitated and trying to reintegrate back into society.

Additionally, one thing I imagine most people don’t consider are the families of those accused, rightly or wrongly, of sex offences and the impact of publication on their lives who’ve done nothing wrong.

I’m not going to dismiss this out of hand however.

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Postby Jebslund » Wed Mar 06, 2019 3:56 am

[OOC: You may wish to define "false accusations" in order to prevent people from flying off the handle and thinking legitimate victims who aren't able to prove they were raped/assaulted/harassed are being thrown in with people who knowingly make false accusations (perhaps the addition of the words "knowingly making" before "false accusations"?).

Iciaros wrote:
A description like this would seem that what you're describing under this resolution is actually perjury (lying under oath), or making a false police report, which are (I would imagine, in most jurisdictions) already crimes, warranting a separate trial. It would therefore seem that this resolution doesn't really do anything if this description is accurate, except control the punishment that member nations can administer for perjury/false reporting in the specific crime of sexual assault.

I would appreciate some clarifications if I'm wrong, but ultimately the above paragraph summarises my understanding of this proposal, and therefore it seems quite unnecessary.)


[OOC: I disagree, for the same reason sexual assault is a different crime than assault. Accusations of sexual assault/misconduct and/or rape have a much larger potential to ruin lives than nearly any other crime, especially when the victim was underage at the time of the crime. Knowingly making false accusations of particularly heinous crimes should be considered separate from other false accusations in the same way those crimes are separate from other similar crimes. While there's definitely room for improvement as far as the punishment (I think it should be the entire term the falsely accused would have served), perjury is usually punished far more lightly than heinous crimes (example: US federal law sets the maximum penalty for perjury at 5 years, compared to 15 for rape (20 for aggravated rape/rape of a minor under 15), and 20 for sexual assault).]
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Postby Heraswed » Wed Mar 06, 2019 4:23 am

Falcania wrote:
Heraswed wrote:
OOC: Now that I look back on it 1/2 may be excessive. Regardless, my justification is that a false allegation has the potential has the potential to entirely ruin a person's life, beyond that they may spend upwards of a decade in prison, they will likely lose jobs, relationships etcetera.
Secondly, it is very unlikely for a person to be prosecuted for false accusations. Only between 2% and 10% of reported sexual assault or rapes are thrown out in court. In order for the accuser to then be prosecuted, the police would have to investigate and the prosecution service deem there be sufficient evidence for a trial, and then they would have to win that trial. Only then would a person face the sentence, it's built in to a system which means that only those true offenders will suffer.


So to put it another way; if a victim of a non-sexual assault presses charges against their assailant, their assailant may be found guilty, and receive a sentence, or be found not guilty, and not receive a sentence.

But if a victim of a sexual assault presses charges against their assailant, their assailant may be found guilty, and receive a sentence, or be found not guilty, and then the victim receives a sentence?


Not at all, if the accused is found not guilty, then there would have to be a separate inquest to gauge whether the accusation was false in itself, there's a world of difference between the accused being found not guilty and the accuser being found guilty of separate crimes.
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Postby Heraswed » Wed Mar 06, 2019 4:27 am

NB the following clause has been added to the resolution.

Defining a false accusation as an accusation which has been found, in a court of law, to be baseless and untrue.

This is a placeholder clause until such a time that a superior definition can be discovered.
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Postby Iciaros » Wed Mar 06, 2019 4:40 am

Jebslund wrote:[OOC: You may wish to define "false accusations" in order to prevent people from flying off the handle and thinking legitimate victims who aren't able to prove they were raped/assaulted/harassed are being thrown in with people who knowingly make false accusations (perhaps the addition of the words "knowingly making" before "false accusations"?).


(OOC: Yes, this would be ideal.)

Jebslund wrote:
[OOC: I disagree, for the same reason sexual assault is a different crime than assault. Accusations of sexual assault/misconduct and/or rape have a much larger potential to ruin lives than nearly any other crime, especially when the victim was underage at the time of the crime. Knowingly making false accusations of particularly heinous crimes should be considered separate from other false accusations in the same way those crimes are separate from other similar crimes. While there's definitely room for improvement as far as the punishment (I think it should be the entire term the falsely accused would have served), perjury is usually punished far more lightly than heinous crimes (example: US federal law sets the maximum penalty for perjury at 5 years, compared to 15 for rape (20 for aggravated rape/rape of a minor under 15), and 20 for sexual assault).]


(OOC: Of course, and I agree, but my idea is that this seems to be a strain of perjury, and the failure at hand is not the lack of criminalisation but rather the punishment and its lack of scaling to the appropriate crime. This seems to call for a more broad-spectrum reform rather than one specifically tailored to this particular crime. It is notable, further, that accusations of sexual misconduct do not universally have the same impact as they do in the US and other similar cultures (I would imagine this is doubly so in the broad range of countries there are in the WA), so imposing a fixed standard regardless of culture and context may be unfair and ineffectual.

This is not to say that I disagree with the idea and motivations behind the proposal, because I do think false accusations are a serious problem, but (in my view) the approach and specificity may need to be modified to better serve the purposes of WA nations.)
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Falcania
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Postby Falcania » Wed Mar 06, 2019 4:40 am

Heraswed wrote:
Falcania wrote:
So to put it another way; if a victim of a non-sexual assault presses charges against their assailant, their assailant may be found guilty, and receive a sentence, or be found not guilty, and not receive a sentence.

But if a victim of a sexual assault presses charges against their assailant, their assailant may be found guilty, and receive a sentence, or be found not guilty, and then the victim receives a sentence?


Not at all, if the accused is found not guilty, then there would have to be a separate inquest to gauge whether the accusation was false in itself, there's a world of difference between the accused being found not guilty and the accuser being found guilty of separate crimes.


So that's the existing crimes of perjury or filing a false police report. Or a civil wrong of defamation if no formal criminal accusation was made.

The fact that it is already a crime to lie to the police or courts about an accusation of a crime means that we already have the data to show how often it happens: not a lot.

Ideally we want a paradigm where victims of sexual assault are able to report their assailant to the police without a negative response: so far, that is not common. You're worried that being accused of sexual assault ruins life? You know what else does? Accusing someone of sexual assault.

Admitting that you have been sexually assaulted means reliving a traumatic experience in public on a frequent basis. It means having to relate a deeply hurtful incident, one that you will be resented for. It means being called a slut, or a whore, or that you were asking for it. It means that people will call you a liar.

Adding the threat of being put in prison on top of that?
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Postby Jebslund » Wed Mar 06, 2019 4:47 am

Heraswed wrote:NB the following clause has been added to the resolution.

Defining a false accusation as an accusation which has been found, in a court of law, to be baseless and untrue.

This is a placeholder clause until such a time that a superior definition can be discovered.

[OOC: I'd tweak that to specify that the accuser has to have known, at the time the report was made, that their accusation was false. An accusation being baseless and untrue is not the same as the accuser knowing it was baseless and untrue.]
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Postby Heraswed » Wed Mar 06, 2019 5:51 am

Jebslund wrote:
Heraswed wrote:NB the following clause has been added to the resolution.

Defining a false accusation as an accusation which has been found, in a court of law, to be baseless and untrue.

This is a placeholder clause until such a time that a superior definition can be discovered.

[OOC: I'd tweak that to specify that the accuser has to have known, at the time the report was made, that their accusation was false. An accusation being baseless and untrue is not the same as the accuser knowing it was baseless and untrue.]


OOC: Sensible, i'll amend it immediately
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Postby Heraswed » Wed Mar 06, 2019 6:04 am

Falcania wrote:
Heraswed wrote:
Not at all, if the accused is found not guilty, then there would have to be a separate inquest to gauge whether the accusation was false in itself, there's a world of difference between the accused being found not guilty and the accuser being found guilty of separate crimes.


So that's the existing crimes of perjury or filing a false police report. Or a civil wrong of defamation if no formal criminal accusation was made.

The fact that it is already a crime to lie to the police or courts about an accusation of a crime means that we already have the data to show how often it happens: not a lot.

Ideally we want a paradigm where victims of sexual assault are able to report their assailant to the police without a negative response: so far, that is not common. You're worried that being accused of sexual assault ruins life? You know what else does? Accusing someone of sexual assault.

Admitting that you have been sexually assaulted means reliving a traumatic experience in public on a frequent basis. It means having to relate a deeply hurtful incident, one that you will be resented for. It means being called a slut, or a whore, or that you were asking for it. It means that people will call you a liar.

Adding the threat of being put in prison on top of that?


"Look, I'm not here to discuss the potential effects on actual victims, it may be a tired phrase, but if you're innocent, you have nothing to fear. Especially with the new definition of a false allegation which was provided. As for it being a crime to lie to police, that may not be true in all jurisdictions, the WA is such as broad and non-homogeneous organisation that assuming something to be a crime in all jurisdictions is folly."
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