The case for a statute of limitations

A 95-year-old former private school headteacher has appeared in court to deny 50 child sex charges dating back to 1953.

Hmm. See headline.

23 thoughts on “The case for a statute of limitations”

  1. Just as interesting is the case mentioned at the bottom of the 78 year old convicted of a rape when he was 15. The cries that these teenagers are children fall strangely silent when discussing the age of criminal responsibility.

  2. So Much for Subtlety

    I find it hard to believe he, or anyone else, would remember what happened back in 1953.

    But statute of limitations? If only. Remember the Social Justice Warriors managed to convict a 70something year old man for marital rape – back in the 1960s. When marital rape was not actually a crime.

  3. Bloke in North Dorset

    Maybe there should be statute of limitations but it it isn’t going to happen in child sex abuse cases. Any politician even suggesting it wouldn’t last 5 minutes, no matter how strong the case. #mobocracy ( h/t [email protected])

  4. find it hard to believe he, or anyone else, would remember what happened back in 1953.

    Perhaps the rape took place between the queen’s coronation and the conquest of Everest.

  5. A statute of limitations implies that you don’t trust the CPS, the judge, or the jury. Perhaps rightly so, but that’s the implication, isn’t it?

  6. So Much for Subtlety

    Tim Newman – “Perhaps the rape took place between the queen’s coronation and the conquest of Everest.”

    Well it would make for an embarrassing pause when someone asked him if he remembered what he was doing when Hillary finally made it to the top …..

  7. I suppose it helps victims with ‘closure’, assists in deriving some satisfaction, revenge, by virtue of trashing the lad’s reputation. To say nothing of warning off current incumbents. Whilst most everyone was fondled by their English teacher at some stage during their education, I suspect rape leaves far deeper scars.

  8. ‘A statute of limitations implies that you don’t trust the CPS, the judge, or the jury. Perhaps rightly so, but that’s the implication, isn’t it?’
    No its a recognition that the evidence is no longer reliable or available to form any sort of rational judgement. AIUI there is a statute of limitation in Scottish law., 50 years I think.

  9. The other point of a SoL is that people should be tried in the society in which they committed the crime, and society changes radically over the years. Attitudes on this matter, notably, are wildly different to what they were in 1953. It is impossible for people to think with the minds of 1950s persons.

    If you take the lesser example of bottom pinching. In the 1970s it was considered harmless fun depending on context, and widely portrayed in media, etc. Nowadays it is considered a grievous sexual assault.

    So it’s about people being tried under very different social conditions to those under which the offence was committed. It’s like putting Guy Gibson (were he still alive) on trial under racial offences legislation for calling his dog “Nigger” in the 1940s.

  10. It’s worth noting having said that that Progressives (they are not alone in this) don’t believe that new laws, social conventions, etc are invented, but rather that they are discovered, akin to religious progressive revelation (God doesn’t change his mind, he just reveals more of it with each prophet (Abraham, Moses, Jesus, Mohammed)). This means that for a progressive, when a new convention is established, it was always true. Slavery was always bad, rather than people coming to an eventual conclusion that it ought to be considered bad, having previously considered otherwise.

    To be fair, most people are prone to this belief. Nobody is very comfortable with the idea that their profoundly held beliefs might be just localised in time and place, and to any degree arbitrary. So we like to pretend that these things we believe in apply to everyone, everywhere; even when it is incontrovertibly true that different ideas were held even by ourselves in the past. So we say that X was always wrong (or right), but we just hadn’t realised it yet.

    As I said, not just Proggies. Libertarians et al have a strong tendency towards this as well, with a widespread belief in an imaginary universal code called “Natural Law” which, again, has always been the True Law Of Mankind, but people just haven’t realised it yet.

    People tend to get very angry, very quickly, when doubt is cast on this kind of belief.

  11. Dearime: “A statute of limitations implies that you don’t trust the CPS, the judge, or the jury. Perhaps rightly so, but that’s the implication, isn’t it?”

    Exactly so. The CPS and Judgeboys know exactly what is wanted of them by the femmi-whipped state. And juries are best regarded as a hand-picked audience of legal theatre goers. At least they can’t put the old guy in the Beast-of-Kiev style glass box this time.

    What possible evidence now exists beyond unsupported testimony? The claim is made that 17 children are involved. Did all 17 come forward spontaneously? It would seem very odd. Did the CPS decide that crimes were commited or do they have 17 accusations delivered of their own free will by supposed victims. Or are there one or two accusers claiming that these events occurred. Impossible to say what happened at the moment. This is yet another reason why all trial transcripts need to be available on line. The evidence against this old bloke needs to be a cut above the usual worthless Yewtree crap.

  12. “No its a recognition that the evidence is no longer reliable or available to form any sort of rational judgement” You’ve completely missed the point. Must do better.

  13. “I suppose it helps victims with ‘closure’, assists in deriving some satisfaction, revenge, by virtue of trashing the lad’s reputation. ”

    Closure? When you’re 69 or 75? What’s the point? You might as well just live with it like you have for 60 years.

    Revenge? On a guy who’s 95? Who might even die before it goes to trial. Who will probably never see the inside of a jail. Whose liberty you are hardly going to affect.

    Warning current incumbents? Sending them a signal that they can spend some decades afterwards doing it, living a full life and go to trial just as you shuffle off this mortal coil?

  14. Regarding what Ecks said, the use of these glass boxes round the dock is an outrage. The Americans, for all their faults, abandoned the dock entirely, and we should do the same. Putting a defendant- under anything less than extreme circumstances- in a glass cage interacting by headphones and microphone, is utterly shameful.

  15. “No its a recognition that the evidence is no longer reliable or available to form any sort of rational judgement” You’ve completely missed the point. Must do better.
    What point have I missed? Perhaps you could explain.

  16. … exception made for historic sex crimes committed in the seventh century. The messenger of allah and the prophet of peace needs to know that Operation Yewtree has him in its sights.

  17. So Much for Subtlety

    Ian B – “So it’s about people being tried under very different social conditions to those under which the offence was committed. It’s like putting Guy Gibson (were he still alive) on trial under racial offences legislation for calling his dog “Nigger” in the 1940s.”

    We sort of do this with historic claims of child abuse. Not sexual abuse but physical “abuse” – although the Left and the media are very careful to conflate sexual and physical abuse to make the numbers look large.

    They simply claim normal child rearing practices in the 1950s were abusive. Which by modern standards they might or might not be. Who knows? But they don’t seem to have been at the time.

    But they have to do it otherwise they would be forced to admit that there was nothing much wrong with the Irish Church’s care.

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