Anatomising a disaster – Law Society’s Gazette

‘Sir Brian Langstaff delivered his final report on the infected blood scandal last month. Fiona Scolding KC, who represented over 300 victims, examines how the state failed them so badly – and the role played by lawyers and the legal system.’

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Law Society's Gazette, 26th June 2024

Source: www.lawgazette.co.uk

Woman stalked by ex-partner loses bid to have restraining order extended – The Guardian

Posted June 14th, 2024 in domestic violence, mental health, news, restraining orders, stalking, victims by sally

‘A woman who was stalked and held hostage at gunpoint by her ex-partner has warned that she and her family are in danger after a judge refused to strengthen a restraining order against her abuser, despite hearing evidence that her life was under threat.’

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The Guardian, 13th June 2024

Source: www.theguardian.com

Gary Glitter ordered to pay more than £500,000 to woman he abused – BBC News

Posted June 12th, 2024 in child abuse, children, damages, news, rape, sentencing, sexual offences, victims by sally

‘The paedophile former pop star Gary Glitter has been ordered by a high court judge to pay more than £500,000 in damages to one of the women he abused.’

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BBC News, 11th June 2024

Source: www.theguardian.com

I am the victim of sextortion – what should I do? – Kingsley Napley Criminal Law Blog

Posted June 7th, 2024 in blackmail, chambers articles, news, sexual offences, victims by sally

‘Sextortion is a form of blackmail where victims receive threats that intimate images of them will be shared or distributed unless they meet the blackmailer’s financial demands. Law enforcement agencies have reported “an epidemic” of such cases with global figures more than doubling in 2023. This reported increase is reflected in the number of clients seeking our advice on how to deal with this particularly distressing form of criminality.’

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Kingsley Napley Criminal Law Blog, 6th June 2024

Source: www.kingsleynapley.co.uk

New Acts – legislation.gov.uk

2024 c. 22 – Leasehold and Freehold Reform Act 2024

2024 c. 21 – Victims and Prisoners Act 2024

2024 c. 19 – British Nationality (Irish Citizens) Act 2024

2024 c. 18 – Building Societies Act 1986 (Amendment) Act 2024

2024 c. 13 – Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers Act 2024

Source: www.legislation.gov.uk

Domestic violence victims left open to attacks as restraining order breach prosecutions plummet for abusers – The Independent

Posted June 4th, 2024 in domestic violence, news, prosecutions, restraining orders, victims by tracey

‘Thousands of vulnerable women face the threat of a violent domestic abuser returning to the household, with convictions for breaches of restraining orders plummeting, The Independent can reveal. Analysis of Ministry of Justice data shows convictions for breaches dropped by 44 per cent between 2018 and 2023.’

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The Independent, 3rd June 2024

Source: www.independent.co.uk

More trauma for rape victims as court backlog doubles in two years due to lawyer shortage – The Independent

‘Court backlogs for rape prosecutions have soared to a record high, with the number of cases doubling in two years and victims facing “devastating” waits for justice.’

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The Independent, 2nd June 2024

Source: www.independent.co.uk

What laws can the Conservative government pass before the general election? – The Independent

‘The Conservatives and Labour have held talks to work out what outstanding legislation can be rushed through parliament to become law before the Commons closes for the general election.’

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The Independent, 23rd May 2024

Source: www.independent.co.uk

Letterbox contact can no longer be seen as appropriate regime for most cases, and should “certainly not be the norm”: Family President – Local Government Lawyer

‘The President of the Family Division, Sir Andrew McFarlane, has outlined the need for a “new approach” to post-adoption contact, noting that letterbox contact can “no longer be seen as the appropriate regime for most cases”.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 23rd May 2024

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

Judge orders child to see mum accused of sex abuse – BBC News

‘A judge in Liverpool ordered social services to arrange face-to-face contact between a “scared” toddler and a mother charged with sexually abusing her, a court has heard.’

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BBC News, 24th May 2024

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Infected blood scandal: who will get compensation, and how much will they get? – The Guardian

‘Victims of the infected blood scandal – seen as one of the worst treatment disasters in the history of the NHS – have raised concerns about the government’s pledged compensation scheme.’

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The Guardian, 21st May 2024

Source: www.theguardian.com

Data, disclosure and duties: balancing privacy and safeguarding in the context of UK university student sexual misconduct complaints – Legal Studies

‘The past decade has seen a marked shift in the regulatory landscape of UK higher education. Institutions are increasingly assuming responsibility for preventing campus sexual misconduct, and are responding to its occurrence through – amongst other things – codes of (mis)conduct, consent and/or active bystander training, and improved safety and security measures. They are also required to support victim-survivors in continuing with their education, and to implement fair and robust procedures through which complaints of sexual misconduct are investigated, with sanctions available that respond proportionately to the seriousness of the behaviour and its harms. This paper examines the challenges and prospects for the success of university disciplinary processes for sexual misconduct. It focuses in particular on how to balance the potentially conflicting rights to privacy held by reporting and responding parties within proceedings, while respecting parties’ rights to equality of access to education, protection from degrading treatment, due process, and the interests of the wider campus community. More specifically, we explore three key moments where private data is engaged: (1) in the fact and details of the complaint itself; (2) in information about the parties or circumstances of the complaint that arise during the process of an investigation and/or resultant university disciplinary process; and (3) in the retention and disclosure (to reporting parties or the university community) of information regarding the outcomes of, and sanctions applied as part of, a disciplinary process. We consider whether current data protection processes – and their interpretation – are compatible with trauma-informed practice and a wider commitment to safety, equality and dignity, and reflect on the ramifications for all parties where that balance between rights or interests is not struck.’

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Legal Studies, 3rd May 2024

Source: www.cambridge.org

Domestic abuse survivors ‘put in danger by early prison release of perpetrators’ – The Guardian

‘Survivors of domestic abuse have been put in danger by ministers’ failure to give notice of the early release from prison of their abusers, a Home Office adviser has said.’

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The Guardian, 8th May 2024

Source: www.theguardian.com

Trauma-informed lawyering in the context of civil claims for sexual violence – Journal of Law and Society

Posted May 1st, 2024 in civil justice, compensation, damages, news, sexual offences, victims by sally

‘Over the last decade, there has been an increase in civil compensation claims for sexual violence in the United Kingdom (UK). Given that trauma-informed approaches have been called for in relation to legal responses to sexual violence, we put forward seven key principles of trauma-informed lawyering in this context and draw on interviews with UK-based civil lawyers who represented sexual violence survivors to explore the extent to which trauma-informed work is taking place. While we found that our sample of lawyers typically had a very good knowledge of sexual violence and the trauma that it can cause, there was less certainty about how to accommodate the impacts in practice. Moreover, there was a tendency to prioritize individual healing and medicalize a form of social injustice. We conclude by emphasizing the need for legal training and education on a trauma-informed approach that accounts for the social and political dimensions of sexual violence and trauma.’

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Journal of Law and Society, 29th April 2024

Source: onlinelibrary.wiley.com

Government backs amendment to better protect victims’ counselling records – Ministry of Justice

‘New legislation will provide extra protections for victims’ counselling notes during criminal investigations.’

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Ministry of Justice, 23rd April 2024

Source: www.gov.uk

Stop crime victims in England and Wales paying thousands for court transcripts, say MPs – The Guardian

Posted April 24th, 2024 in criminal justice, judgments, Ministry of Justice, news, victims by tracey

‘MPs from across the political spectrum have urged the government to remove a “barrier to justice” that sees crime victims in England and Wales forced to pay hundreds or thousands of pounds for transcripts of court proceedings.’

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The Guardian, 21st April 2024

Source: www.theguardian.com

Criminal injuries compensation and “Daisy’s Law” – 12 KBW Personal Injury Law Blog

‘Jessica Muurman, pupil barrister at 12KBW, analyses the recent judgment in R (Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority) v First-tier Tribunal v GHI [2024] UKUT 3 (ACC), which concerns the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme 2012 and its interaction with ‘Daisy’s Law’ in the Victims and Prisoners Bill.’

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12KBW Personal Injury Law Blog, 10th April 2024

Source: pilawblog.com

Stronger protections for stalking and harassment victims – Home Office

Posted April 24th, 2024 in criminal justice, government departments, harassment, news, stalking, victims by tracey

‘The government has announced measures making it easier for police to apply for stalking protection orders, meaning more victims will be protected earlier.’

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Home Office, 22nd April 2024

Source: www.gov.uk

The Manchester Arena Inquiry: lessons for future inquiries – 6KBW College Hill

Posted April 24th, 2024 in chambers articles, inquiries, news, terrorism, victims, witnesses by sally

‘Lawyers involved in public inquiries often refer, half in jest and half out of fear, to a hypothetical future ‘inquiry into the inquiry’ in which their decisions will be scrutinised. Happily for lawyers, but perhaps to the detriment of future inquiries, there is usually relatively little analysis and certainly no formal mechanism to review the effectiveness of an inquiry following its completion. That is the position notwithstanding the growing reliance on public inquiries to investigate matters of acute public concern, and that chief amongst the many purposes of inquiries – establishing facts, providing accountability, making recommendations – is learning lessons.’

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6KBW College Hill, 17th April 2024

Source: blog.6kbw.com

Survivors of 2017 Ariana Grande concert bombing take legal action against UK agency – The Independent

‘More than 250 survivors of the suicide bombing that killed 22 people at a 2017 Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England, are taking legal action against Britain’s domestic intelligence agency, lawyers said.’

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The Independent, 15th April 2024

Source: www.independent.co.uk