CRIME

The UK Has Already Prosecuted 206 Cases Of Revenge Porn

One of the UK's recent revenge porn cases involved a man who sent images of a woman to her brother

CRIME
The 206 revenge porn prosecutions were all made after April 2015 — REUTERS
Sep 06, 2016 at 7:46 AM ET

Prosecutors in the United Kingdom have brought legal proceedings in 206 cases of revenge porn since the government introduced legislation last year, according to a new report from the Crown Prosecution Service.

In one case, the CPS, tasked with prosecuting criminal cases in England and Wales, gave a man a 12-week prison sentence after he sent pictures of a woman to her brother. The CPS also granted the woman a three-year restraining order against him.

In another case, a defendant received 12 weeks’ incarceration with 18 months suspended after he pleaded guilty to sending “intimate” pictures of a woman to her family members on Facebook, and indicated he would publish more photos online.

More Bill That Would Make Revenge Porn Federal Crime To Be Introduced

Revenge porn is the act of posting explicit photos or videos of another person online without the person’s consent, and with the intent of harassing or shaming them. Often, that person is a female ex-partner.

In its report, the CPS also detailed a case of offline revenge porn, in which a man handed out “intimate” photos of a woman at a supermarket. The CPS sentenced the man to 24 weeks behind bars, suspended for 18 months, and a two-year restraining order. He was also ordered to pay costs.

Director of Public Prosecutions with the CPS, Alison Saunders, said the prosecutions were “indicative of the growing number of offenses occurring through social media.” The 206 prosecutions were all made after April 2015, when England and Wales introduced the law criminalising revenge porn.

In the U.S., 34 states have enacted laws specifically targeting those who post explicit pictures or video of other people online without their consent, according to the Cyber Civil Rights Initiative. One of the most high-profile revenge porn cases involved Kevin Bollaert, the founder of UGotPosted, a revenge porn website, who was sentenced to 18 years in prison last year. However, he was convicted on other charges, including identity theft, and extortion. Bollaert was later re-sentenced to eight years behind bars.

In July, Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) introduced federal legislation against revenge porn called the Intimate Privacy Protection Act. In August, the bill was referred to a Congressional subcommittee.