Revenge Porn

What is revenge porn? Previously dealt with under existing Harassment or Malicious Communications law, there is now a specific offence. The offence is that of distributing a private sexual image of someone without consent, and with the intention of causing them distress. This is commonly called revenge porn. Revenge porn has become a growing phenomenon in recent years and usually involves the posting and sharing on the web of intimate images of former lovers without their consent. Such actions, often by spurned men, are designed to degrade and humiliate ex-partners in the most cruel and malicious way. Victims have spoken out of how they have been traumatised by the images of their bodies being ogled and mocked by thousands of men. The maximum custodial sentence is two years. Distributing an image has a wide definition. It can range from uploading the image to a pornographic website, sharing on social media, to simply sending it via sms to a friend’s handset. Therefore uploading a naked or pornographic image of a person without their consent is now illegal. This does not apply to offences committed before March 2015 when the Act relating to revenge porn came into force. Police powers in relation to revenge porn are the same as with any indictable offence. You may be arrested. Your phone and computer equipment seized, and browser history checked. You may be invited to the police station for a voluntary interview under caution. If you are invited for an interview under caution, then you should seek legal advice. Revenge porn has been described by the courts as “a highly vindictive invasion of privacy, done with the intention of humiliating and hurting your victim”. A number of people in the UK have already been convicted under the revenge porn laws, including a woman and a youth. One person was jailed for 16 weeks. Instagram and Facebook have been used.