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Yvette Cooper warns against ‘unfair’ police DNA targeting of gay men

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  1. Keith Francis Farrell 17 Jan 2013, 8:57pm

    I cannot understand why it is nessarry for those people to apply for their conviction to be overturned, unless the goverment is going to offer them financial compenstation for the truma of having to apply. what they should have done was narrowed the time fraime to convictions in the last 10 years, or better yet make it compulsery for anyone investigated with crimes of violence to have their DNA taken. Sorry I am dyslexic.

  2. Philip Breen 17 Jan 2013, 9:02pm

    Thank you Yvette Cooper for your support. What happened in Manchester is very bad. Indeed, the post-1967 convictions do need addressing. ‘Soliciting or persistently importuning by man for immoral purposes’ did not require that a man be sexually involved with another for a conviction which specifically targeted gay men as the modern version of ‘loitering with intent’. Together with various other repealed 1967 gay offences, this offence should be ‘disregarded’. ‘Liberty’ campaigned two years ago but T.May refused to include it or others post-1967. Her ‘disregarding’ gesture has been of no help for anyone under 63. The disclosure of these old gay convictions on a ECRB wreck the lives of people who are of no danger to children or vulnerable adults but who, because of these long since spent sexual offences, can neither work nor volunteer in these categories & who also suffer economically. If a ‘disregarding’ or a ‘filtering’ mechanism could be applied many could put the past behind them.

  3. An urgent enquiry is required. This is a Government initiative. The police are sent lists to follow-up. It is easy to blame them but they have no choice. This is another example of the Government pursuing ill thought out policy which is causing severe damage within the gay community.

  4. Future PM?

    1. Rhoderick Gates 19 Jan 2013, 5:38am

      I hope not

  5. Yvette Cooper is an absolute legend for her LGBT support. She’s one of the few people actively speaking for us in the political world, and I love her for it.

  6. Dennis Velco 18 Jan 2013, 4:14am

    This is just creepy.

    Thanks for this article and your reporting. What you do is appreciated.

    I posted it to my LGBT Group on LinkedIn with over 17,000 global members to spur members to read your article and to make comment. I also scooped it at Scoop.It on my LGBT Times news mashup.

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  7. I am concerned too that the man has a conviction for consensual sex from 30 years ago, which would have been 1983, well after the decriminalisation of homosexuality.

    Is anyone able to shed some light on this at all?

    But well done to Yvette Cooper for speaking out. Let’s hope that Theresa May takes note and does what needs to be done.

    1. He was in the army at the time, and that was only repealed in 1994

    2. He broke the law (as it was at the time) on two counts: he was a member of the armed forces and he was under the age of 21.

      1. Strictly speaking homosexuality was not by itself illegal in the armed forces.
        It was ‘inapropriate sexual conduct’ which was against the rules and could be applied equally to heterosexual relationships, but rarely was.
        Rather the forces used it as a method to punish those found guilty, or even suspected, of having gay sex. Or, of even being gay at all.
        I believe it was on this basis that some of those evicted from the forces because of their sexuality later sued the forces.
        The armed forces at the time were paranoid about homosexuality; also many police officers were ex forces and carried this paranoia into their civilian careers.

  8. It should also be remembered that the rules of evidence have also changed.
    A few decades ago you could be convicted on circumstantial evidence. Or, on the evidence of another person.
    The police whether civilian or armed forces would not necessarily have had to actually see the deed being committed
    A simple letter from some aggrieved person would be enough to condemn members of the armed forces.

  9. Also- please be aware-Should you discard used condoms at outdoor gay cruising sites-your DNA could be legitimately collected by local Police “investigating littering”-and then retained on the Police National Computer for future reference-which could have potentially serious future implications.

    You have been warned!!

  10. Interesting that this only seems to be showing up as a problem in areas where the new Police Chief happens to be a former Labour MP. Authoritarian habits die hard?

  11. Abused by police 23 Jan 2013, 8:40pm

    I raised this issue on the new Police Crime Commissioner for Devon & Cornwall Constabulary discussion forum as a matter of grave concern regarding police targeting gay men for their DNA

    ….I was then BANNED from any further postings on the PCC forum.

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