New Channel 4 documentary to show methods of anti-gay gang violence in Russia

Aaron Day February 2, 2014
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In a forthcoming Channel 4 Dispatches documentary, “shocking” footage of the methods used by anti-gay groups in Russia will be broadcast as part of the lead up to the Sochi Winter Olympics.

According to the Guardian, ‘Hunted’ is to be broadcast on Wednesday at 10pm, in the run up to the Sochi Winter Olympics starting on Friday.

The documentary follows members of the anti-gay groups Occupy Paedophilia and Parents of Russia, and documents the methods they use to intimidate and humiliate their victims.

Liz Mackean, the investigative journalist who travelled to Russia to make the documentary, said: “We filmed these groups with their knowledge, and what I found shocking afterwards was that only a few asked to have their faces disguised. They all believe they are doing the right thing.

“Occupy Paedophilia has groups in more than 30 cities. They operate with impunity and under the cover of the remarks Putin has made suggesting that children are at risk from homosexuals.”

President Vladimir Putin said earlier last year that the country’s ban on “homosexual propaganda” was put in place to protect children.

The documentary shows how gangs use the internet to lure potential victims to meetings, before threatening violence to force confessions or humiliating acts from them. One victim is forced to dance while the gang films them for the internet.

Tom Porter, commissioning editor for the documentary, said: “Occupy Paedophilia deliberately blurs the lines between paedophilia and homosexuality.

“During one of the filmed incidents of humiliation, the group asked our cameraman and director, Ben Steele, to stop filming, but he continued partly because he was concerned that if he stopped there would be violence.”

In one other sequence, Parents of Russia member Timur Isav is shown attending an LGBT event while handing out bags containing a length of rope, suggesting that they use it to hang themselves.

Mr Porter also commented on Channel 4’s decision to broadcast the Paralympic Winter Games in March.

He said: “It just shows the way a broad channel like Channel 4 can exist. We are doing our investigation, while over in sport they are doing the Winter Games.”

Ms Mackean said the gay Russians she interviewed were against a boycott of the Games, as they feared it would lead to an increase in violence and hostility.

In July last year, Occupy Paedophilia took to social media to publicise images and videos of gay teenagers lured in on the promise of a date, before torturing them and forcing them to come out to friends and family on video. 

An uncensored image of one of the victims holding a sex toy, covered in red paint, and being held down, appeared on the Spectrum Human Rights Alliance blog.

The accompanying report also included a video of the torture of one victim who was sprayed with urine in public, however YouTube has now removed the video.

The Spectrum reported that no police action was taken against the incidents, despite numerous victims, and that over 500 similar groups had been formed across Russia using the VK social networking site.

Former Labour MP and Europe minister Denis MacShane had called on Mr Cameron to personally boycott the 2014 Winter Olympics in protest at President Vladimir Putin’s “rank homophobia”.

“The PM believes in engagement. He doesn’t think that boycotts and grand gestures achieve much,” a government source told The Independent. 

PinkNews revealed reccently that Sports Minister Helen Grant is highly likely to attend the Winter Olympics, along with her boss, Culture Secretary Maria Miller. Mrs Grant  is also a junior Equalities minister at the Government Equalities Office (GEO). Mrs Miller is also Minister for Women and Equalities, the most senior member of the GEO.

In December, US President Barack Obama named several gay sports stars as part of America’s delegation to the Winter Olympics in Russia – but in a significant move confirmed that he will not be attending the event himself.

For the first time since 2000, the US will also not send a president, former president, first lady or vice president to the Winter Olympics.

More: anti-gay laws, David Cameron, Europe, G20, Moscow, putin, Russia, Russia, sochi olympics, Sochi Winter Olympics, Sochi Winter Olympics 2014, St Petersburg, Stephen Fry, Vladimir Putin, Winter Olympics, Winter Olympics 2014

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