Extreme Pornography (CJLA)

The Extreme Pornography Act was part of the Criminal Justice and Licensing (Scotland) Act (2010). It came into force on 28 March 2011.

Full History of the Extreme Porn Act in Scotland

Links and Documents relating to the Extreme Porn Act in Scotland

What Effect has the Extreme Porn Act had in Scotland?

In September 2012, CAAN-Scotland completed a Freedom of Information Request to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service in Scotland to determine how many cases have been brought under the new law.

Between August 2011 and August 2012, 41 cases were reported in Scotland.

You should note that the data for this request has been prepared using offences reported to the COPFS under section 51A(1) of the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982, as this is the offence created by Section 42 of the Criminal Justice and Licensing (Scotland) Act 2010.

In addition to the 34 charges in which court proceedings were taken, four charges are part of cases for which no decision as to prosecutional action has yet been taken at this time, and a further three charges had no action taken.

So 7% of the cases had no action taken (not even to court), while 83% of them did. 10% are undecided at the time of the request.

Of the 34 that went to court, 5 were convicted, 1 was not convicted, 1 had no action taken, and the other 27 are still ongoing. So of the completed cases (not ongoing), they have a 71% conviction rate.

If I were against pornography, I could easily manipulate the facts to say that only 12% of extreme pornography cases get convictions. This simply is not true. One must only consider the completed cases. when one ignores the 27 ongoing cases and the 4 without a decision, the convictions make up 5 of the 10 remaining cases.

So basically people have a 50-50 chance of getting a sexual offender title if they have extreme pornography.

The note reads that the majority of the accused were reported for other charges as well as extreme porn charges, as was expected. However, it is not clear from the table whether the conviction noted was for extreme porn or for (some of) the other charges. This will be clarified.

Neither is it clear from the FOIR results what specific images were more likely to get a conviction. There are, remember four options of falling foul of the law (bestiality, necrophilia, rape and sadomasochism), but the FOIR did not specifically address the types of images. Again, this will be followed up on.

Accessing the Scottish Courts Webpage, only one reference to “extreme pornography” was found. It indicates that the other charges are related to indecent images of children and rape. I was personally, however, insulted by the following line:

An examination of the cookie files on the computer disclosed images of extreme pornography, including bestiality and bondage. In his six years experience, Mr Symon [the computer expert] had only found such sites being accessed by males. He had never come across a female downloading such images.

Far be it for women to access pornography, especially bondage. Oh, we just have no inkling of even how to do it! Well bless my cotton socks.

The Scottish Courts webpage does not contain all the files online, though, so more research will be needed to be able to tell for sure what other charges are brought with the extreme porn charges, and what types of images are most commonly targeted found.

For location and timeline of these reports, as with most crimes, Strathclyde (Glasgow, for all you sassenauchs) Police Force tops the list in sheer numbers. They are, after all, the largest constabulary in Scotland. Surprisingly, April 2012 seemed to merit police attention with 12 reports being made across Scotland (half in Strathclyde). What on earth happened in April 2012? Only knowing the related charges will help pin down why there is such a peak in April.

In summation, there have been arrests and convictions under extreme pornography law. So far it does not seem that the courts are letting people off lightly. More research needs to be done to establish what types of images are being targeted. More research also needs to be done to establish what other crimes the people are being charged with as well as getting an idea of what sort of advice they are getting. Are these people even challenging these allegations? It isn’t known.

If you know more about this topic, please contact CAAN.

If you are one of these people, please contact CAAN so that we can see if we can help.

Please stay tuned for further updates on this topic.

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