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Devon man avoids prison after affair with 14-year-old boy

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  1. This is a tough one. There are a LOT of 14 to 16 years olds out there who are after sex, you only have to look at the gay hook up sites and apps to see that. Many dont look their age either.
    I dont really know what to think about this case, Once you know you should stop, but at that point its too late.
    Sex eduction should tell kids that misrepresenting your age is wrong and personally i think it should be a crime to do so, so that kids are aware that there are consequences.

    1. I agree that kids should be taught the full consequences of lying about their age – but I also believe that once an adult knows that the correspondent is under-age, they should stop contact.

    2. @Rovex

      I agree there are elements of this case being a tough moral one to call, and that would be the case whether this was a gay, lesbian or heterosexual relationship that was involved.

      It does become a little more clear when the offender became aware of the actual age of the boy and then pursued the relationship – that should not have happened …

      I think the court have recognised some unusual circumstances in this case, thus not imposed a custodial sentence …

  2. Cambodia Guesthouse 31 Oct 2011, 12:07pm

    I think that on this occasion, given the facts of this case, the right result was reached…

  3. Affair? Let’s save that word for the consensual side of things shall we?

    1. Where is it suggested that this relationship wasn’t consensual? (Unless you mean on the part of the 20yo, since we’re told the 14yo initiated the sexual aspect.)

      1. Technically, in law there is no possibility of consent under the age of 16 ….

        Now no matter what we think, and most professionals involved in investigating sex crimes, supporting young people or other criminal justice, health or welfare roles would accept that some young people mature to a point where they can make decisions about engaging in sexual activity at different ages, some may be under 16 and some may be over. The law is not grey on this issue – although there is some weighing and balancing by police, social services, public protection case conferences, CPS and courts in whether cases are suitable for trial or not.

        1. Thanks Stu – duh, age of CONSENT, I wasn’t really thinking.

          I do tend to feel that the Spanish – and Swiss, I see below – pattern is rather intelligent, in leaving a margin of possibility for young people who, let’s face it, are going to be sexually active, while reducing the likelihood of exploitation.

          1. @Rehan

            I agree that a margin of possibility is a sensible thing.

            I also agree with the Spanish system (and the UK does sometimes adopt a similar approach in this regard) is good in looking at whether criminal prosecution is necessary or not, and accepting that it may not be in the public or childs interest to pursue a prosecution.

    2. Miguel Sanchez 31 Oct 2011, 3:22pm

      AMO, where did it say in there that IT WAS NOT CONSENTUAL?

      1. Legally speaking, it could not have been consensual, as the boy was “under the age of consent”, and that means that he could not have given consent to any sexual relationship.

  4. Looks like the 14 year old didn’t have very nice parents if they were annoyed about him coming out.

  5. Always a tricky one to call when both parties are quite young and one is below the age of consent. In some jurisdictions no action is taken if the age gap is only a couple of years (and 6 is admittedly too wide) and there is no evidence of coercion or manipulation. A good principle to follow, I think.

  6. This is a worrying trend lately that plenty of 14-16 year old boys are using adult platforms like Grindr, Scruff and Gaydar through their phones. Sadly as most of these phones are purchased/paid for by parents, there is no way of checking the age of the subscriber effectively.
    It’s a word of warning to be careful when approached online, and don’t necessarily trust when someone says they are over 18.
    I agree with Rovex that misrepresenting your age in such circumstances should be wrong.

  7. Spanner1960 31 Oct 2011, 2:09pm

    I think we should follow the Swiss approach to juvenile sex (11+): it is legal as long as there is no more than a three year age gap. This allows people of a similar age to get on with their lives, but prevents paedophiles from exploiting them.

    1. @Spanner1960

      I believe Spain have a similar approach, but their guidance on it is quite grey – in that over 12 consensual sex can occur within (I think) a 3 or 4 year age gap, but that where concerns are raised about possibly unwise and damaging sexual relationships occurring eg where there may be a breach of trust, there will be an evaluation by a case conference of professionals to determine whether there is a genuine concern, how the concern should be addressed, if the child needs any support, and ultimately if any criminal conduct should be considered.

  8. This is one case i would of let them go. Theyre mentally similar and there was no signs of predatory behaviour or abuse.

    The 14 year old initiated it and they were both happy. Its probably thanks to this relationship he had the strength to come out to his parents and when his family reacted badly he ran to the man he perhaps loves.

    I see the 20 year old cant be aroud kids for 5 years but that doesent mean the relationship is over.

    I think common sense kind of provailed here but perhaps not enough. There seems to be a thinking of not asking the 14 year old what he wanted and that he didnt know wha the was doing hea just a kid and they know nothing and must be protected.

    My belief is if they feel same about each other and want to be together then its their buisness. Its aleays case by case but in this one it seems nobody was hurt and they were happy together.

    Perhaps as a society we just need to be mature and be more open and less judgemental.

    1. Miguel Sanchez 31 Oct 2011, 3:27pm

      I just hope the parents, who were obviously not happy when their son came out, tries to CURE or FIX him. That could cause the boy more problems.

      1. Reed Boyer 31 Oct 2011, 4:00pm

        I’m guessing that you left out the word NOT. As in ” hope the parents DON’T try to fix of cure him.”

  9. Johnny33308 31 Oct 2011, 3:19pm

    This story is so filled with sadness, it brings tears to my eyes. Those involved seemed to have needed each other in a way none of us can know, and to pull them apart seems less than fair or helpful in any way at all. Love is what they share, nothing evil or tawdry. It is so very sad, such gentleness and love is very rare in our world filled with exploitation of absolutely everything and everyone. Pulling them apart seems cruel and mean, and serves no legitimate purpose. It seems rather arbitrary in this particular instance, but our world is just filled with such arbitrary cruelty as this. There are always exceptions to every rule, and we must realize the rules do not always function properly for all people, sadly…This is a truly heartbreaking story, for the boys involved most especially. This speaks of great desolation…….

  10. There is a 5 year gap between me and my boyfriend which means if we had got together a few years ago we would be sat squarely at the same ages as the people in this case. I remember that at 14/15 I was nowhere as innocent and vulnerable as some people would make me out to be. When I was 16 i was having sex with people many years older (one double my age). Did i really mature that much in 6 months… don’t think so.

  11. the age gap of a few years is not bad , is a good way to avoid predators ,but lets not kid our selves some much younger are actually looking for much older , i always make sure they are the age they say as for the law , and also advise them to look more for tier own age group but , the fact is many kid still want older guys,

  12. There is much credible research that hows paedophilia is disproportionate amongst homosexuals. The Family research council have done much to expose the disproportionate danger of paedophilia within the homosexual community

    1. Erm, examples of evidence please?

      1. There is loads of credible research. here is one example…,002.htm

        1. Commander Thor 31 Oct 2011, 8:59pm

          Actually, your article says:

          It doesn’t matter how often the lie is repeated; it still remains false. Dr. Michael R. Stevenson conducted an exhaustive review of the literature in 2000, and concluded that “a gay man is no more likely than a straight man to perpetrate sexual activity with children,” and “cases of perpetration of sexual behavior with a pre-pubescent child by an adult lesbian are virtually nonexistent”.39 The research is so strong that the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatrists40 and the American Psychological Association41 are on record saying that there is no relationship between homosexuality and child sexual abuse.

          These anti-gay activists know that their claims are false. They’ve read the research from the most knowledgeable experts in the field — the same research I reviewed here in this article. They must know that the falsehoods they are spreading contradict what the researchers themselves are saying.

          1. I was going to strongly suggest the bias of this article given that the authors come from a world view predisposed to condemn homosexuals and thus the integrity of the study must be questioned.

            Evidence needs to be assessed against a series of measures to determine the reliability of such evidence, and this study fails the reliability test, however you carry it out.

            It is good to know that the study recognizes and accepts the outcome of some esteemed research pointing out that a homosexual is no more likely to offend with children than a heterosexual.

            Evidence – dismissed.

    2. Commander Thor 31 Oct 2011, 5:49pm

      Was that before or after George Rekkers hired the teenager from to “lift his luggage”?

    3. The Family Research Council – you mean the group which is categorised as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center? The FRC is regarded in the same manner as the KKK.

      1. Same as the KKK you say? Which crimes have they committed and how many have they murdered? Why not address the statistics they have quoted and show why they are wrong instead of the usual gay brigade slandering when you don’t like the facts?

        1. @Keith

          The FACTS as you put it prove your statement is wrong – the report actually confirms the opposite that there is not increased likelihood of a homosexual being a paedophile than a heterosexual

    4. Paedophilia (if thats what this case is – which is debatable …) is equally prevalent in terms of incidence amongst heterosexuals and homosexuals … there is much credible research to demonstrate this …

      1. No there is not. Show it!
        Also, while you are here, I am asking you whether consensual imale adult incest is immoral in your view and you cannot answer. Why are you being avasive regarding this straightforward question?

        1. Your article presents some of the evidence very clearly and starkly … I need provide no more at the moment

          and Keith, this is not the thread to ask that question – strawman – incest is wrong. But that is not the subject of discussion here

        2. You do seem obsessed with incest, Keith, or rather the idea that you can scare people into silence with it. Well, here is my ha’penny worth – if all parties are uncoerced and over the age of consent and all avoidable medical harm is avoided (notably conceiving children where heterosexual coitus is involved – genetical proximity in parents is damaging) – then I see no moral problem at all. Taboos are not morally significant in themselves, no matter how deeply felt they are.

    5. Keith, the endless repetition of pernicious lies by religious ideologues to rationalise their own hatred does not change the fact that they are lies. And it does nothing to protect the great majority of sexually abused children, who suffer from the attentions of (mostly) men related to them whose adult interests and relationships are heterosexual.

      1. I don’t need to rationalize it. It is clear for all to see that homosexuality is one of the causes of the spread of deadly plague. Who wouldn’t hate deadly plague.
        Also, Psalms 97:10 says hate what is bad!

        1. Cherry picking from the OT I see …

        2. Commander Thor 1 Nov 2011, 6:40pm

          Bring back slavery and I’ll give a rat’s ass.

        3. Predictable drivel irrelevant to the points I have made.
          And while we’re on the Psalms, would you care to respond to what you have been asked before and pointedly failed to answer? – Is the killing of Babylonian babies OK, as plainly stated by Psalm 137?

          1. Still waiting, Keith. Funny how silent you are around Biblical nastiness in anybody’s book.

  13. Angela S. 1 Nov 2011, 5:51pm

    The 20 year old was stated to be young compared to his age, so let’s assume a maturity of a 18 year old…. Assume the 14 year old to have a maturity of indeed 16.
    The 20 year old could have dumped the 14year old straight away, where the article does not give any indicationwhat the rezult of that mighthave been in combination withnot having support at home.
    I’minclined to think the guy is being punished to show a ‘no tolerance’ policy…

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