Tuesday, February 26, 2019
Upskirting has been made a specific criminal offence after a Bill to ban the cruel craze received Royal Assent in the House of Lords.
People convicted of taking an image or video of a victim’s groin or buttocks under their clothing face being jailed for two years and being put on the sex offenders’ register.
Gina Martin, who campaigned for the law change after being upskirted at a festival in 2017, welcomed the move and said it was a “long time coming”.
Prime Minister Theresa May, who was in the House of Commons as cheers rang out when the Bill received Royal Assent in the Lords, said she was “very pleased to see the degrading practice of upskirting become a criminal offence after the tireless work of victims and campaigners.”
Victims called for the creation of a specific law after becoming frustrated with a lack of options to prosecute perpetrators.
While some people were able to seek a conviction under harassment, voyeurism or outraging public decency laws, the creation of a specific offence means suspects can be prosecuted where they sought to obtain sexual gratification or cause humiliation, distress or alarm.