starman

Observer Sunday:Paying for sex to be criminal offence

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article here

The new offence will carry a hefty fine and criminal record, which could prevent those caught from getting jobs in sensitive occupations.

The legislation will cover women who have pimps or drug addicts who work to pay off their dealers as well as the rarer cases of trafficked women. This is expected to include the majority of Britain's 80,000 sex workers. Ignorance of a woman's circumstances will not be a defence.

(Jacqui) Smith said it was 'not mine or the government's responsibility to ensure that the demand is satisfied', adding: 'Is this something about which people have a choice with respect to their demands? Yes, they do. Basically, if it means fewer people are able to go out and pay for sex I think that would be a good thing.'

The prostitution review will be published this week

Under the new offence, men would not be able to claim in court that they had not known the prostitute had a pimp or a drug habit

It would be quite difficult for a man paying for sex in the majority of cases not to fall under this particular offence.'

*************************************************

So, tell me someone, what is the definition of drug habit?

Too many vodka shots per week?

*************************************************

and just as if that wasn't enough, there's yet another cif

We are far too tolerant when it comes to vice and drugs

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As usual it is coming out it is all done and dusted...

Is it not meant to go through the Lords first and do you know when?

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The Cif thread is written by "A Life Peer & moral philosopher", yet it basically consists of her stating her own views & dogma & then attempting to ascribe them to society as a whole with, as is usual for The Guardian/Observer, no verifiable evidence; in fact no evidence whatsoever, in support of her claims.

Basically, it would appear that the Government propaganda campaign has gone into overdrive again & that the only hope is to expose the misrepresentations & outright lies by writing to as many MPs &, especially Members of the Lords as possible.

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Totally true write to your MPs, and get evry women you see to write to hers as well. They seem not to get it that many women work for agencies and brothels because they want too. Convenience in the main. I was explaining the law change on a punt I had yesterday to one women

She was horrified, she also wondered what would happen to all the police and judges who came to see her when she works for that particular incall agancy. Interesting because another women from the same agency also commented on the number of police in the area paying for her services.

She had been an independent in her time, so she may become one again, hopfully I have a website sale. I left her my card.

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As usual it is coming out it is all done and dusted...

Is it not meant to go through the Lords first and do you know when?

Well it has to go through the commons first!! they haven't published the actual legal statute that they're proposing as far as I'm aware. Just the "Plain English" version. The fact that they're suggesting it's an offence of strict liability i.e you have no defence of saying you didn't know the girl's circumstances is also highly unusual and likely to cause problems. Having sex with an underage girl isn't even an offence of strict liability fof f*cks sake, if the girl had good fake ID to show she was 16+ then you can get away with having sex with a 13 year old girl. But you can't get away with having sex with a 40 year old woman who claims she's not working for an agency, no matter what evidence she shows you.

Please write to your MPs and any Lord's you can think of - it cannot be right that sex with a consenting adult is more serious than sex with a 13 year old.

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Just read that article.

So they are trying to make paid sex with someone controlled for someone else's gain illegal.

So if it goes through then massage parlour sex would be illegal because the house takes a cut?

Or would parlours just change so you pay a fee to the house for use of the premises then any money you give to the WG is hers and hers alone.

I suppose escort agencies would have to become escort collectives. You pay the WG and she gets all the money and then the WG pays a subscription to the agency...

...and I suppose all of that isn't something you can know as a punter. How do you know the exact financial arrangements of a parlour or agency.

Which means you would be taking a risk and and will be deterred which is exactly what they want.

It's sad. Personally I like paid consensual sex between adults and I don't see it as any business of the state to intervene but if this goes through I can't see myself punting in the UK.

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Just read that article.

So they are trying to make paid sex with someone controlled for someone else's gain illegal.

So if it goes through then massage parlour sex would be illegal because the house takes a cut?

Or would parlours just change so you pay a fee to the house for use of the premises then any money you give to the WG is hers and hers alone.

I suppose escort agencies would have to become escort collectives. You pay the WG and she gets all the money and then the WG pays a subscription to the agency...

...and I suppose all of that isn't something you can know as a punter. How do you know the exact financial arrangements of a parlour or agency.

Which means you would be taking a risk and and will be deterred which is exactly what they want.

It's sad. Personally I like paid consensual sex between adults and I don't see it as any business of the state to intervene but if this goes through I can't see myself punting in the UK.

England and Wales Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) Decisions

The main point in this appeal concerns the meaning of the word "control" in section 53(1) of the Sexual Offences Act 2003The judge directed the jury as follows: The words of the offence is 'controlling the activities', not 'forcing the activities'. Defence counsel repeatedly used the word 'force' or 'forcing'; disregard that. The prosecution do not have to prove that he forced Diane into prosecution or forced her to work as a prostitute; they have to prove that he controlled her activities."

In our judgment, "control" includes but is not limited to one who forces another to carry out the relevant activity.

It is certainly enough if a defendant instructs or directs the other person to carry out the relevant activity or do it in a particular way "Control" may be exercised in a variety of ways......It may be because the defendant holds out the lure of gain, or the hope of a better life. Or there may be other reasons.

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Who benefits from criminalising sex workers & clients?

Stop new laws vs consenting sex!

PUBLIC MEETING

Hosted by John McDonnell MP

Tuesday 25 November 2008 6-8pm

Committee Room 16, House of Commons

Westminster, London SW1

Fully wheelchair accessible All welcome

Allow 15 minutes to get in

Speakers to be announced

The government is expected to announce more laws to criminalise sex workers and clients in the Queen's Speech on 3 December. Yet public opinion is increasingly hostile to repressive policies that force prostitution underground, and make it less safe for sex workers.

Help us stop religious and feminist fundamentalists who divide prostitute women from other women and other workers. Listen to the workers, not the preachers.

Sex workers want rights, not charity. We want safety, not prison. We want unity, not segregation.

English Collective of Prostitutes

www.prostitutesCollective.net

The ECP co-ordinates the Safety First Coalition

In February, the Safety First Coalition with MPs and Peers defeated government attempts to "rehabilitate" sex workers and increase arrests.

On 14 November, the IQ2 debate at the Royal Geographical Society defeated "It is Wrong to Pay for Sex "by 449 to 203.

The Communications Workers Union has voted for decriminalisation.

Long established women's organisations are canvassing their members.

Lapdancers handed into Downing Street a 3,000-strong petition against tightening licensing laws.

Internationally, New Zealand's five-year review showed decriminalisation is a success.

In US, the historical election that voted Barrack Obama as president by a landslide, was also memorable in San Francisco for Proposition K to decriminalise prostitution in the city.

Prop K got 43% of the votes - astonishing given that its sex-worker-led campaign had no funding, and that the police, District Attorney and Mayor used their position to misinform and scare voters.

Workers don't benefit from criminalisation. The ECP has been inundated by women who have been raided, arrested and charged, and face imprisonment for running safe, discrete premises where no coercion is taking place.

Anti-trafficking legislation is being used to justify these raids. Who will support families hit by recession when mothers and daughters who sell sex are imprisoned? How can women who want to get out of prostitution find another job if they have a criminal record?

Pimps, violent men and "rehabilitation" projects benefit. Pimps are attracted by any illegal economy. Violent men know that illegal workers can't report violence or exploitation. And more anti-prostitution projects will be funded to "save" the rest of us.

Why are resources wasted on policing consenting sex when most rapists are getting away with it? Why are anti-trafficking laws used to deport women?

(why this press release appears on a sexworkers' site in Austria, but not anywhere in England is beyond me...)

http://www.sexworker.at/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?p=45505#45505

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Starman,

You've posted a link to the Prostitute's Collective homepage, regarding the meeting that's to be held on 25 November, but I can't seem to find any details on this page.

Any chance you could give us a clue as to where we can actually find them, as there's a possibllility I might be in London on that date & I'd like to attend, if my schedule allows it.

Thanks.

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Starman,

You've posted a link to the Prostitute's Collective homepage, regarding the meeting that's to be held on 25 November, but I can't seem to find any details on this page.

Any chance you could give us a clue as to where we can actually find them, as there's a possibility I might be in London on that date & I'd like to attend, if my schedule allows it.

Thanks.

the link is to Sexworker.at (in Austria) see my comment:

(why this press release appears on a sexworkers' site in Austria, but not anywhere in England is beyond me...)

http://www.sexworker.at/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?p=45505#45505

Sexworker.at must be on ECP's mailing list, they often publish news from around the world (UK=Grossbritannien).

ECP them self is useless at using the INTERNET, they rely on old fashioned media i.e writing articles in newspapers etc

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Common sense from Rod Liddle in today's Sunday Times:

Not all one-way traffic, Harriet

The government is planning to make it illegal for a man to procure the services of a prostitute, but not illegal for the prostitute to offer her services and engage in the transaction. This fatuous stupidity - championed by Harriet Harperson, of course - implies that all prostitution is solely the consequence of demand from slavering men and that the prostitutes are always unwilling participants and thus victims - despite some 40,000 years of evidence to the contrary.

In other words, it is a purblind and politically correct attempt to deal with the problem. You may have read recently that some local councils have threatened action against people selling burgers, because they are an "unhealthy" food option. That seems to me fairly stupid and authoritarian. But imagine how much more stupid it would be if they threatened to prosecute only those people who bought the burgers.

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it just goes to show how out of touch the government is with reality,

i am confused now,

under these laws if i see an a girl that is doing on her own and not a part of an agency would i get done ?

also i feel this is an attack on single men that cannot get a date like myself not everyone can get a girl how are we going to get comfort ?

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What is a "drug habbit" ? A spliff once a month?

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What is a "drug habbit" ? A spliff once a month?

I was thinking exactly the same, alcohol is also a drug.

However, we shouldn't pay too much attention to feminists writing in the guardian - they must have based the article on a press release or something

because the story appears here and there with a slightly different twist:

It covers women who are controlled by pimps or who are drug addicts and working to pay off their dealers,

http://www.pressassociation.co.uk/component/pafeeds/2008/11/16/corporate_lap_dance_visits_slammed?camefrom=home

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/politics/3468402/Paying-for-sex-with-prostitutes-to-be-made-a-criminal-offence.html

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under these laws if i see an a girl that is doing on her own and not a part of an agency would i get done ?

In theory yes, AFAIK there is no mention of who or what does the "controlling", so taking it to an extreme, if a prostitute lives with her mum and her mum says "we need £200 for rent this week, get your sussies on and get working", then her mum is "controlling" her.

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In theory yes, AFAIK there is no mention of who or what does the "controlling", so taking it to an extreme, if a prostitute lives with her mum and her mum says "we need £200 for rent this week, get your sussies on and get working", then her mum is "controlling" her.

Actually why not take a step more down this track, what if a landlord says to his prostitute tenant "You are 2 months behind with your rent, £300 by the end of the week or you're out on your arse", is that control? if it is then I doubt that a punter is going to suss that one out.

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This proposed legislation really is a complete muddle, straight out of the Mad Hatter's Tea Party.

For example, if I pay a woman for sex and, unknown to me, she uses her earnings to feed her drug habit, I get nicked. So I hire a barrister who uses his fees to pay for his coke habit, that's OK whether or not I know about the lawyer's use of drugs.

There is already a battery of legislation to stop pimping etc. which are not currently being used. If ms. Smith is trying to stop women being exploited (which I support) and to encourage addicts to leave a life on drugs behind them (which I also support), why have licensed brothels been rejected?

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Actually why not take a step more down this track, what if a landlord says to his prostitute tenant "You are 2 months behind with your rent, £300 by the end of the week or you're out on your arse", is that control? if it is then I doubt that a punter is going to suss that one out.

And let's get even more impersonal and, given the current financial climate, more likely, take the case of Thelma of Thurrock (for want of a better name); yesterday she was an "uncontrolled" prostitute working from a flat, no agency, no pimp etc. Today she receives a letter from Bloggo Building Society telling her that she is 3 months in arrears and that if she does not rectify the situation that they will re-possess her flat, does that make her a "controlled" prostitute? Even though with or without the letter from the Building Society she would still be a prostitute, no agency, no pimp etc.

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And let's get even more impersonal and, given the current financial climate, more likely, take the case of Thelma of Thurrock (for want of a better name); yesterday she was an "uncontrolled" prostitute working from a flat, no agency, no pimp etc. Today she receives a letter from Bloggo Building Society telling her that she is 3 months in arrears and that if she does not rectify the situation that they will re-possess her flat, does that make her a "controlled" prostitute? Even though with or without the letter from the Building Society she would still be a prostitute, no agency, no pimp etc.

No - control does not mean force or coercion but it does require knowledge and direction. The bank/building society is asking for money owed. They're not taking bookings for the girl, and don't specify how she gets the money. A controlled girl is one who has someone who takes bookings/screens clients for her as a minimum. The drug habit thing will probably be written as "an illegal drug habit" therefore alcoholics will not count.

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No - control does not mean force or coercion but it does require knowledge and direction. The bank/building society is asking for money owed. They're not taking bookings for the girl, and don't specify how she gets the money. A controlled girl is one who has someone who takes bookings/screens clients for her as a minimum. The drug habit thing will probably be written as "an illegal drug habit" therefore alcoholics will not count.

Ah, I see, so if a prostitute lives with her mum and her mum says "we need £200 for rent this week, get your sussies on and get working", then her mum is "controlling" her?

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Ah, I see, so if a prostitute lives with her mum and her mum says "we need £200 for rent this week, get your sussies on and get working", then her mum is "controlling" her?

yes, that counts. The controlling prostitution law was brought in to replace the "living off immoral earnings" offence, with the difference being that instead of just taking money off the prostitute you had to be aware of what ahe was doing to make the money and party to that. Previously innocent husbands or adult children were prosecuted simply because they lived in a house where the mortgage or rent was paid or part paid by the prostitute's earnings. Or they ate food bought by her. Now you have to get money and be party to her activities.

Case law has established that a mere suggestion that is acted upon is control. Control is not complete, and is not meant to mean the girl has no choice. Agencies point the girl towards clients and vice versa. The mother is suggesting she go out to work or tell the agency she's available today.

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yes, that counts. The controlling prostitution law was brought in to replace the "living off immoral earnings" offence, with the difference being that instead of just taking money off the prostitute you had to be aware of what ahe was doing to make the money and party to that. Previously innocent husbands or adult children were prosecuted simply because they lived in a house where the mortgage or rent was paid or part paid by the prostitute's earnings. Or they ate food bought by her. Now you have to get money and be party to her activities.

Hmmmmmmm, so in every case where a punter is done under the proposed new law then obviously, in order for him to be done, there would have to be a "controller for gain" in order for the prostitute to have been "controlled for gain", and logically that "controller for gain" would be charged under Section 53 (Controlling prostitution for gain) of The Sexual Offences Act 2003?

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England and Wales Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) Decisions

The main point in this appeal concerns the meaning of the word "control" in section 53(1) of the Sexual Offences Act 2003The judge directed the jury as follows: The words of the offence is 'controlling the activities', not 'forcing the activities'. Defence counsel repeatedly used the word 'force' or 'forcing'; disregard that. The prosecution do not have to prove that he forced Diane into prosecution or forced her to work as a prostitute; they have to prove that he controlled her activities."

In our judgment, "control" includes but is not limited to one who forces another to carry out the relevant activity.

It is certainly enough if a defendant instructs or directs the other person to carry out the relevant activity or do it in a particular way "Control" may be exercised in a variety of ways......It may be because the defendant holds out the lure of gain, or the hope of a better life. Or there may be other reasons.

Interesting reading the full account, though much of it went over my head. There though were comments on inimidation, and making to work in a certain way. i.e teh man spied on Diane and gave her adise. By all accounts Diane was intimidated by the personality of the man.

So I was wondering that if there was no intimidation as in most agencies, and there was no 'house style' ie, each women provdes what she wants. She has a total veto on the client she sees, and that the prices are set by the women. Would this be enough remove oneself from the charge of control.

I notice many agnencies with different pioces, and with different services for each escort, thus demosnstrating the women has control of her services.

In the recent case of oriental gems, there could be demonstrated control through a £30,000 debt bond.

With the agency Silk and Lace the jury decided Drew had not controlled prostitution for gain, despite running one of the biggest escort agencies. In this agency there must have been control, because there was house style. It could be jury of mainly women were unconvinced it was a sex agency. Those on trial did not give evidence, but successfully insisted through counsel their business offered only a £120-an-hour escort and massage service.

After considering weeks of evidence the jury of nine women and three men decided they were telling the truth.

So I am not sure control is quite so clear cut.

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