Law and Sexuality

A commentary and resource on Law and Sexuality by Professor Chris Ashford and guests

Fisting in the Courtroom

Myles Jackman, a solicitor with Hodge Jones & Allen LLP reports that the firm will be representing the defendant in an important case to be heard at Southwark Crown Court.  It’s not often that a key case takes place in a lower court, but this case could help to clarify the law on obscenity.

The defendant in the case, Michael Peacock, is charged on indictment with numerous offences under the Obscene Publications Act for distributing supposedly obscene DVDs. The films in question feature: ‘gay’ fisting (the insertion of five fingers of the fist into the rectum of another male); urolagnia (in this case men urinating in their clothes, onto each others’ bodies and drinking it); and BDSM (in this case hard whipping, the insertion of needles, urethral sounds and electrical “torture”).

Myles further explores this issues on his blog with specific reference to the CPS guidelines on obscenity (which my students will recall we looked at in the online workshop on pornography and obscenity before the winter vacation).

The case should also provide another perspective on what constitutes ‘extreme pornography’ under the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008.  An important case and I wish the defendant well.  It will be interesting to see if the jury feels it is indeed helpful to criminalise these kind of images and what the contemporary boundaries of obscenity are.

Read the full post from Myles here.

Post revised 9.52, 3 Jan 2011.

Advertisements

11 comments on “Fisting in the Courtroom

  1. Elly
    January 3, 2012

    HI Chris – I know Michael via facebook. He's a really nice guy. He is also very generous with sharing his work mainly photography from what I have seen.Sometimes I wonder if there are commercial issues here. Plenty of films feature fisting so I am not sure why his has been given special consideration. I wonder if it has anything to do with his status commercially (i.e. not part of a big company).also 'gay fisting' doesn't exist. men can be bisexual (or even identify as straight) and still insert a fist into the anus.

  2. Chris Ashford
    January 3, 2012

    You're absolutely right Elly and that was sloppy work by me – I pasted that section in (but should have re-read it) – I've now put 'gay' in inverted commas. On the commercial point – yes, I wonder the same if it's a factor. Don't know what the answer is.

  3. Chris Ashford
    January 3, 2012

    On reflection – given it is a jury trial – I've also tweaked the final bit.

  4. Elly
    January 3, 2012

    Thanks! I hope it's a 'liberal' jury. He's a very nice man maybe that will come across.

  5. Chris Ashford
    January 3, 2012

    Hard to predict and I'd be fascinated to read the defendant argument – perhaps Myles will eventually make them public.

  6. Elly
    January 3, 2012

    I saw the tweets from Alex it looked like all they did today was show the pornos! I hope the jury enjoyed it.

  7. S B
    January 3, 2012

    Other European Countries must be ( I was going to say wetting themselves ) laughing themselves senseless ( well more than they do already) at the tizzy we get in to in this country over such matters…

  8. Elly
    January 3, 2012

    sometimes SB I think of leaving so I can laugh with them.

  9. David Bridle
    January 4, 2012

    Which is more obscene? Michael Peacock's videos (none of the sexual practices in the videos carry ANY serious risk of HIV infection) or the over 50 "bareback" high HIV risk videos the BBFC certificated last year? Sending a terrible message about safer sex to younger gay men using porn for sexual knowledge and normalising bareback sex for older gay men. "It's in a DVD certificated by the authorities: it must be OK/normal not to use condoms."

  10. David Bridle
    January 4, 2012

    http://www.bbfc.co.uk/search/?searchwhere=db&q=BarebackThis is a search on the BBFC's site for 'Bareback'. You'll find the hundreds of gay porn DVDs featuring high HIV risk, unsafe sex with no condoms ever used which the BBFC have certificated (the BBFC is not a government body as such but paid for by the video industry, not dissimilar to newspapers and the discredited Press Complaints Commission) – whilst also seemingly (according to Michael's lawyer's associate's blog) supporting the prosecution of Michael Peacock for DVDs which have no risk of passing HIV and showing sexual practices which also have near zero HIV risk. It's a mad world.

  11. Elly
    January 7, 2012

    My take on the Guardian's version of events:http://graunwatch.wordpress.com/2012/01/07/obscenity-discourse/

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Information

This entry was posted on January 3, 2012 by in Censorship, expression, Law, obscenity, Pornography.

Twitter Updates

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Archives

%d bloggers like this: