Thursday, 20 February 2014

Writer's block!

Nothing to report...

It's been a good few months, moved from one job to another, Lisa is doing well, I'm doing well.

What to say?


I've been, entirely reasonably, asked

"You pleaded guilty in order to spare your victim any further ordeal; however, you don't remember your offending. You did what they said you did, but you didn't harm anyone. You were punished for something you thought, not something you did. If Lisa is 20 now, then she was 13 in 2006."

And it is only fair that I answer those questions.

So

1) I don't remember what I am alleged to have done. However, the evidence against me was overwhelming. There was no point in pleading not-guilty to put Lisa through what, at the time, would have been the agony of a trial.

I took a gamble in two respects, firstly that she would, as promised, wait for me, and secondly that pleading guilty with good mitigation would get me a minimal sentence.

2) My offending was entirely non-contact. At no point did I physically do anything to or with Lisa. What I was accused of was all non-contact.

3) I've discussed the strange and convoluted definition of sexual grooming before.

4) Lisa is now 22, 23 this year. She works for a Mental Health charity as a Service User Advocate. We are a couple but live apart.

Friday, 10 May 2013

New House...

It will never cease to amaze me how quickly things can be done in this country when there is a will to do so.

I no longer live in Northants. As of this Monday just gone, I live in Buckinghamshire.

MAPPA decided that given the circumstances of my case, and the fire, it would not be safe for me to continue to reside in Rothwell, and as a result, they approached my employer and other agencies to move me to a different location.

AS a result, massive cooperation a housing association, an employer, the DWP and two local councils and a couple of charities. A moving van, everything that has been usefully recovered from the old flat, and a donation of a complete lounge and bedroom suite means the new maisonette is not completely emply either.

My employer, who was fully aware of who I was, agreed to 2 weeks compassionate leave and a transfer to an office in Luton, and I now live in a large urbanised area famous for Concrete Cows. I'm sure it will take a time to get used to, especially as I've been transferred to Thames Valley Police for MAPPA purposes, but it's gone surprisingly smoothly, and I have had telephone and interweb connected up today. I start at my new office on Monday, having been introduced to everyone yesterday (though not as Fenrir).

So... the saga begins again - how to cope with a new life in a new place. Do I hide my past or brazen it out this time? I think the former is better than the latter, even though I'd prefer to openly say "yes, I did the crime, I dd the time, so what..." which is what Lisa still wants me to do.

In the meantime, be ready for the next instalment of R v Lukoi, when your hero appeals against his sentence and conviction. And additionally applies to the police for compensation for unlawful arrest and detention.

It's all coming up in the next exciting episode of Diary of an Ex Offender.




Saturday, 27 April 2013

What Chance the ex-offender (2)

As some of you will recall, just before my licence expired last year, a company who can remain nameless decided that they were going to try to expose me to win a court case.

It did not work, and the company and its directors were ordered to recompense me for their unlawful conduct. And they did recompense me, and I got a new car out of it.

However, it appears that the directors, rather than pay up and get on with their lives, decided that it was their aim in life to expose the "pervert" that I am, and despite police and other interventions  they decided to write to my neighbours (and my employer) and tell them the good news. Needless to say that the directors in question have been arrested, but that didn't help me.

And as a result, I'm currently living in temporary accommodation, and will not, under any circumstances be returning to my fire damaged home in Rothwell.

Now I understand why it is that sex offenders (which I am not, and have not been since 2006) are disliked, but surely trying to burn me out, or kill me, is actually not going to help anyone. If I am forced out of a place where I am stable and not offending, the most likely result is I won't return. Not only to the house, but to the town, or even the county. And, if I change my name and move, and "forget" to register - for my own protection, of course - who benefits? The community I'm living in doesn't...

And be assured that I would be entitled to not register, as I would have a legal defence of committing a lesser offence to ensure a greater one was prevented.

Thankfully, I'm not like that - but just imagine if I was.

Oh, the Neighbour who set the fire has also been arrested, charged and remanded, so that will be a fun trial.

Monday, 8 April 2013

Fame(ish)

Ben mentioned me - though not by name, of course.

And boy, did it drive Traffic - 70 new readers this weekend alone.

Thanks all - makes me wonder whether I should start turning this into a criticism of penal policy as well...

Thoughts, as ever, are welcome

Please return thefavour - Ben Gunn is far more eloquent than I can hope to be.

http://prisonerben.blogspot.co.uk/

Friday, 2 November 2012

How the ordinary can be extraordinary

What a fantastic day I have had.

The last blog post I made mentioned Ben Gunn's blog, which I try to read regularly. You can find this at http://prisonerben.blogspot.co.uk/ and I would encourage everyone to go and take a look.

Today, I was in Winchester on business, when I got a message - from Ben himself. It appears he occasionally reads this blog (a surprise in itself) and wondered if I cared to meet in a neutral location for coffee.

As Lisa was with me (that's why I was in Winchester, she was appearing this morning) I wrote back asking for a location, and threw the address into the crap-nav.

After a couple of hours drive, I met Ben in a coffee shop not too far from Shepton Mallet prison, and we had a really good discussion. And oh boy, was it good.

Ben Gunn is, in some prisons, a legend. Some think him a fool, some think him a hero, but there are very few prisoners who do not know his name. As a result  I will admit to being a little awestruck that Ben wanted to meet me, and wasn't sure what to do or say. Lisa broke the ice, and then conversation just flowed. There were several frank exchanges of views about our respective offending; Ben is very open about his own past.

In respect for Ben's privacy and anything he might want to say on his own blog or elsewhere I won't discuss our conversations, but a few things became very clear.

1) Ben is not even close to the monster that many have tried (and failed) to paint him.

2) For a man that spend over 30 years in prison on a 10 year tariff, he is an educated, intelligent man who should be listened to by those who claim to be "in power" over prisoners and the Criminal Justice System.

3) There is no way that he should have spent over 30 years in prison for an unplanned killing , where Robert Thompson spent 8 for a carefully planned and executed joint enterprise.

It is also clear that while his experiences of custody have shaped him, they have not tainted the man, unlike mine.

Lisa and I both left with a changed view of the man - changed for the better. Having had the genuine privilege of meeting Ben Gunn, I hope that in the future I can consider him to be among the very few real friends I have.


Tuesday, 23 October 2012

How hard is it to blog?

I check Ben Gunn's blog almost daily, and try to catch his posts every evening.

Yet despite this, I don't find the time to write my own posts - this is, I think, my fourth this year.

The reason for this is simple - my life is not nearly as complex post-conviction as it was predicted to be. I have a home, a car, a job, a passport. I can travel if I choose, and within reason can do anything I was able to before conviction.

More importantly, my local community do not have an issue with me, my local police are no longer harassing me, and I am simply getting on with my life.

So, dear reader, I need to know - are you interested in the minutiae of that life, or do you only want to know about the "big things" that happen for me?

Please let me know by commenting, and I will look towards a revitalised blog incorporating your thoughts over the next few weeks.


Thursday, 26 April 2012

Who is sexualising our youth?

I have read a lot recently, about how the youth of today are being sexualised by the media, the internet, Paedophiles (sic) and many other external sources.

Indeed, if you were to believe the Daily Mail, that bastion of truth and decency*, you would think that 99% of Internet users are child molesters out to groom your daughter and rape her before she reaches 10 years of age. But actually, even now, more than 70% of sexual offending against children** is perpetrated by someone known to the victim, such as a friend or family member. How many teenage boys are raping their 15 yr old girlfriends, as a matter of law?

 So lets consider, shall we, where the "sexualisation of the young" claimed by the papers comes from.

Well firstly, as we are talking about newspapers, what about the Sun and the Star, where teenage breasts can be found day in and day out? Let us not forget that the Sun published the first pictured of Sam Fox the day of her 16th birthday - they must therefore have been taken when she was 15.

 To be honest, I think that the hypocrisy of the papers is not unusual, but the media doesn't have as much influence as is claimed. And I'd like to exemplify this by considering my bus journey home from work today. At the Bus Station, a couple got on with two children. The couple must have been in their 50s or 60s, and the children were clearly pre-teen, and apparently not related. Throughout the journey, the older pair were teasing the younger pair about their "relationship" asking if they were boyfriend/girlfriend. A pre-teen boy and girl...?

When I was 13, I was first asked by my father why I didn't have a girlfriend, and was I queer or something. By that time, some of the boys in my year group were claiming, in their indecisively toned voices, to have popped the cherry of girls in the same year, or even in the year below. Not only that but some of the girls in the year were already dating year 11 or higher boys. Indeed, when I was in year 12 and 13 (then called the Sixth Form), I was dating a Year 9/10 (forth form) girl, and no eyebrows were raised by either my or her parents - her father gave me a packet of condoms, this being in the heady days of the early to mid 80's, with "ADIS - Don't Die of Dyslexia" adverts on every billboard.

Lets examine Teen Chatrooms. In these places, teens talk to teens about sex, pretty much exclusively. They swap stories, boasts, images, sometimes videos. "Sexting" is rife. By 13, most teens hormones are boiling over, and they need to find some sexual release, whether that be alone, with another, in chatroom, watching porn, whatever rings their bell. It's a miracle that so many get to sixteen without having had their "first time"

And as a result, the majority of teenagers conversations in private are sexual.

I have therefore come to the perfectly reasonable conclusion that what is causing the sexualisation of our 12-17 year olds is, primarily, our 12-17 year olds; this is how life has been since even before we could speak and conceptualize the phrase "voulez vous couchet avec moi?".

Sleep well.


* This was the Daily Mail's front page, the day that Amanda Knox was freed from Jail. http://bit.ly/If5iln

** For the definition of a child, you need to look at several different pieces of legislation.
The Children  and Young Persons Act 1933 defines a child as a person under 14
The Sexual Offences Act 2003 defines a child as someone under 16 (for consent purposes)
In the Criminal Justice System you are treated as an adult for sentencing at 17, but not put into an Adult
Prison until 21. 18-21 year old's normally go to YOI, and 17 year old's would be put into secure accommodation.
The Protection of Children Act 1978 defines a child as Under 18.
For Child Benefit you parent can still be in receipt while you are at college until you are 19.

And don't forget, ignorance of the law is no defence...