Feeds

UK prosecutors drop 'tiger' sex video case

North Wales Police missed Frosties connection

High performance access to file storage

The CPS dropped a prosecution under the extreme porn law last week when it apparently accepted that the soundtrack on a clip of a tiger apparently having sex with a woman rendered the video comical rather than pornographic.

Andrew Robert Holland of Coedpoeth near Wrexham appeared at Mold Crown Court on New Year's Eve to answer two charges of possessing extreme porn. Both charges related to video clips sent to him by friends, allegedly as jokes.

The first charge involved a video clip of a woman having sex with a tiger. The tiger, according to Mr Holland, was an animated image, rather than a real tiger.

He told El Reg that the fictional nature of the action was obvious from the fact that, at the end of the scene, the Tiger turns to camera and said: "That beats doing Frosties ads for a living."

According to court reports, neither police nor prosecution listened to the soundtrack before the case reached court and the voiceover became an issue.

At that point, prosecutor Elizabeth Bell withdrew the charge, saying that the prosecution had decided to offer no evidence. Questioned by the Judge, John Rogers QC, she claimed that when the case was previously reviewed the film had no soundtrack.

El Reg spoke to the Crown Prosecution Service just 24 hours before the case went to court. At that point, they expressed themselves entirely satisfied that there was a case to answer.

We later asked whether the soundtrack was available to them or whether the police had withheld the soundtrack from the CPS.

The CPS is adamant that no soundtrack was given to it when charges were considered and the lawyer was not told at that time there was a soundtrack.

The CPS did the job that it is required to do - which was to review the evidence as supplied by the police - and as soon as it became aware that a soundtrack was available, it was instrumental in pointing this out to the judge in the trial.

Holland told us his computer equipment was seized in June 2009, in relation to another matter never pursued further by police - and he made the police aware, in November 2009, of the existence of the comic soundtrack on the clip in question.

We asked North Wales police when they became aware of the content of the soundtrack, and are waiting a response.

Concerns about selective policing of extreme porn were raised by Baroness Miller in 2008, when she said, in a debate on the extreme porn law:

"Perhaps the most chilling point in the Minister's summing up [...] was that when it came to policing this it was for dealing 'with individuals' who are 'causing concern'. Well, that is pretty difficult. How are they causing concern if they have committed no crime yet? They might be causing concern in all sorts of ways; they might be individuals whom the police do not much like, for a number of reasons, but then they get raided. Again, that really makes me feel worried."

Mr Holland still faces a charge of possession of extreme porn in respect of the second video clip: that charge will be heard in court on 17 March. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Whoever you vote for, Google gets in
Report uncovers giant octopus squid of lobbying influence
Lavabit loses contempt of court appeal over protecting Snowden, customers
Judges rule complaints about government power are too little, too late
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Don't let no-hire pact suit witnesses call Steve Jobs a bullyboy, plead Apple and Google
'Irrelevant' character evidence should be excluded – lawyers
EFF: Feds plan to put 52 MILLION FACES into recognition database
System would identify faces as part of biometrics collection
Putin tells Snowden: Russia conducts no US-style mass surveillance
Gov't is too broke for that, Russian prez says
Ex-Tony Blair adviser is new top boss at UK spy-hive GCHQ
Robert Hannigan to replace Sir Iain Lobban in the autumn
Alphadex fires back at British Gas with overcharging allegation
Brit colo outfit says it paid for 347KVA, has been charged for 1940KVA
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.