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Police fail to apprehend anti-paedophile vigilantes

Police fail to apprehend anti-paedophile vigilantes

Police fail to apprehend anti-paedophile vigilantes

British police are failing to arrest and investigate a so called ‘anti-paedophile’ vigilante group, despite one group spokesman admitting on BBC Radio that his organisation is knowingly acting “outside of the law”.

The group – whose name we will not publish as we do not believe it deserves publicity on TheOpinionSite.org – admits trapping potential online abusers by posing as teenagers. The suspected offender is then encouraged to meet in person, held against their will and ‘questioned’ by the group who, according to its spokesman, is merely seeking an ‘explanation’ for the individual’s behaviour.

The group proudly claims that its actions so far have has caused 5 “sex offenders” to be arrested – though nothing against the individuals has been proven and none have been charged.

The vigilantes also use a quote from Genghis Khan:

Had you not created great sins, God would not have sent a punishment like me upon you.”

One might be tempted to comment that this is not the ‘mission statement’ one would expect from an organisation that proclaims that it is “not our intention to hurt anyone”.

Rather interestingly, the group’s Facebook page also has a link to other child protection websites as well as a link to the neo-Nazi English Defence League.

It would seem that the police – always anxious not to offend the Sun and Daily Mail reading public – are prepared to do nothing rather than face claims that the police are not doing their job properly.

The fact is however that as the number of people on the Sex Offender Register continues to increase by anything up to 10% year on year, largely due to the ever-increasing number of ‘historic’ abuse allegations being prosecuted, the number of alleged sex offenders in Britain becomes more and more unmanageable.

Police are finding it almost impossible to monitor offenders in the way in which the government and the public would like; mainly due to a lack of resources as money becomes more and more scarce under the government’s austerity regime.

The police do not wish to admit this as to do so may give those subject to the Sex Offender Notification Requirements more confidence in challenging their own treatment by the police and probation services.

When asked, the police were slow to come forward with any meaningful explanation as to why they were not taking action against vigilantes who, by their own admission, are acting outside of the Law.

For example, a spokesman for Leicestershire Police said:

“While we always encourage members of the public to contact us with any information they have about a crime, officers would advise against taking this kind of action. Investigations and inquiries into potential sex offenders are extremely sensitive and detailed and have to be conducted in a way which ensures that prosecution of an offender isn’t affected.

“Consideration also has to be given to any threats and harm to anyone involved in the investigation, plus family and friends of potential offenders.”

When the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) were asked, their spokesman said:

“We would discourage people from using the internet to do this. It is a stupid idea. There are real dangers that vigilantism will drive people underground and that is exactly what we don’t want. We need to know where sex offenders are.”

If these views are truly those of the police in general, TheOpinionSite.org must ask why the police are not doing something to prevent the actions of these potentially criminal groups who are, apparently, making the job of the police so much more difficult.

Furthermore, as senior prosecution lawyers have suggested, any action by vigilantes – and the manner in which they obtain their ‘evidence’ – may actually damage any chance of real paedophiles being prosecuted.

It is also highly likely that those vigilantes involved have themselves in fact committed serious offences, possible including False Imprisonment and Kidnapping.

There are also other, more sinister aspects to this type of behaviour.

For example, the spokesman for the vigilante group in question, interviewed on BBC Radio 5 Live’s Victoria Derbyshire programme and who claims to come from “the protection industry” (a doorman perhaps?), admitted that his ‘work’ had taken over “most” of his life.

This suggests that he enjoys the feeling of power and gratification that his activities give him.

The growth of anti-paedophile vigilante groups is not however the only matter for concern.

There is also the growing phenomena of “RansomWare” by which innocent individuals receive emails saying that they have been ‘detected’ as having viewed child pornography but, for a fee, their details will be removed from the website’s database.

The natural distrust of the police together with the fear and inevitable personal damage of being accused or investigated – even if completely innocent – together with the personal destruction and suspicion that such measures bring, causes most people to pay up.

If they do not, they receive another email threatening to ‘reveal’ their name to the police unless $500 is paid.

Government have not offered a comment on this form of intimidation and extortion when asked to do so, other than to say it was a matter for the police.

Of equal consideration is that policing in the UK is ‘by consent’.

In other words, the people accept the power of the police (even after the collapse of the associated moral authority caused by recent, well-publicised police dishonesty) provided it is fair and balanced and truly ‘in the public interest’ (as opposed to simply being “of interest to the public”).

Whilst certain populist-leaning sections of the British public and media may believe that vigilantes setting out to  hunt down would be paedophiles who allegedly use the Internet to ‘groom’ potential victims is a good thing, the fact that these groups admit operating outside of the Law is not.

Furthermore, their activities would not even be contemplated if it were not for the flawed legislation that creates – but does not define – the very British offence (for no other EU country has such an offence) of ‘grooming’.

If the police know therefore that these vigilantes have admitted flaunting the Law – and the police are indeed well aware as police officers are reportedly involved in the culmination of the ‘sting’ operation – and yet do not take steps to arrest and investigate such groups, they are failing the public as much as they would be were they to ignore allegations of child abuse made through proper channels and in the proper way.

If paedophiles are fair game for vigilantes, who next? Gays, Muslims, Gypsies, Immigrants, Blacks?

Nor should one ever forget the manner in which anti-Jewish vigilante groups were permitted to prosper during  Hitler’s rise to power whilst the Rule of Law was quietly destroyed

TheOpinionSite.org believes that it is up to the police to take the necessary action against these self-styled ‘have a go’ pseudo-policemen. Not to do so leaves the way wide open for anyone that has a dislike of any particular social group to take whatever action they consider appropriate.

CEOP, the online protection department of the police, says that catching online-paedophiles is best left to them. However, it would say that at this time as CEOP is about to become absorbed into the newly formed National Crime Agency and is expected to lose most of its money – and its influence.

It is also worth noting that the usually very noisy NSPCC, as well as other protection charities and campaigners – including the self-styled “Dr” Sara Payne of the Sun newspaper – have had nothing to say about the vigilante groups that get such a kick out of playing policemen for their own, egotistical reasons.

TheOpinionSite.org is therefore of the view that the police should come down as hard and as frequently on these ‘anti-paedophile’ vigilantes as they would on any suspected sex offender.

Not to do so will leave the police open to accusations of bias and self-serving indolence.

More importantly however, it may also mean that individuals who truly are a danger to children using the Internet may not in fact be prosecuted; the supposed ‘evidence’ apparently gathered by these vigilantes having been made hopelessly inadmissible in court by those who profess to be protecting children but are in fact feeding their own, over-inflated egos whilst breaking the Law themselves.

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9 Responses to Police fail to apprehend anti-paedophile vigilantes

  1. Zelda
    April 28, 2013 at 5:40 pm

    In my area a Facebook group have been set up to ‘name and shame’ using press details for addresses those convicted past and present. The police asked them to close it down but they have re-opened in another name. One man who was cleared of an offence has had his property targeted but the police are not doing anything. With 5,000 members this is turning into a modern day witch hunt. This country is a joke.

  2. pete
    April 25, 2013 at 6:18 pm

    One of the principal reasons for developing a civilised legal system based on the rule of law is to prevent the capricious exercise of personal, idiosyncratic vengeance. The truly disturbing feature of this dangerous goonery is that it is in no small part a product of the educated elite’s paranoid obsession with predatory paedophilia, an obsession actively shared by much of the UK’s police “service”. Ironically, they are overstretched and so can’t be bothered to control a phenomenon they have played an active part in creating – irrational and extreme public hatred of an imaginary paedo-bogeymen, haunting every school, sports club, public park and internet social network.

    Collective hysteria like this is not conducive to a humane and rational justice system; it fosters cheap sentimentality, collective hysteria and cruel vengeance instead, which appears in the UK to have become a form of popular entertainment. This is what the call for “justice” has come to mean in mature, Anglophone democracies in the twenty-first century: revenge and aggression. And this, one can’t help surmising, is precisely what motivates the good burghers of this vigilante gangsterism to go out on paedo-hunting missions. Seriously, how many sane, balanced people would even consider such a thing?

    Unless we develop the capacity to stop indulging the narcissism of demagogues who glory in rousing the synthetic hatred of those who need a convenient outlet for their unmanageable violence by offering them officially dehumanised scapegoats, we must anticipate the rule of law being further eroded in the name despicable vigilante adventures such this. The shocking tragedy is not that barely literate thugs decide to take the law into their own hands on the flimsy pretext that they are protecting children (it seems obvious that this is the perfect alibi for malice-driven imbeciles who just enjoy violence, gangsterism and intimidation). People like this have always behaved so, gleefully seizing on socially-sanctioned scapegoats to give vent to their limitless violence, which they find addictively thrilling. The real tragedy is that the authorities can be so coolly indifferent to an illegal phenomenon that they and their allies in the UK’s pathologically paedophile-obsessed charities have done so much to facilitate.

    Ten years ago, the journalist Barbara Amiel warned that “paedophile hysteria is turning us into a brutish society.” It seems she was right.

    So much for social progress, eh?

    But a truly courageous article Mr Peytors. Three cheers!

  3. smiler
    April 24, 2013 at 8:35 am

    Another great idea from across the pond. This group, plus the other one who I’ll not name, are copying a well known US TV show, but in an amateurish and illegal way.

    We only hear one side of the ‘chat logs’, and what’s the betting that the ‘girl’ was responding very sexually on the chat?

    Look at this as well – a man in Dover is committing an ‘offence’ in these actions, but 22 miles away over the channel, no-onw would bat an eyelid. Sure, if they were pretending to be 10,11,12 years of age, fair enough. But they’re pretending to be 15. Why that age? Someone of 15 could be 1 day away from the age of consent.

    And why always pretend to be girls?

    I heard one of them on the news insisting that children have a right (or a roight as he said in his brummie accent) to browse safely online. No they don’t. Parents have a responsibility to monitor their children’s usage – but obviously these numbskulls believe it’s someone else’s responsibility – no doubt they are a product of our welfare/nanny state.

  4. sam
    April 23, 2013 at 3:22 am

    My first thoughts on reading this tabloid tale were – I do not believe the group had resulted in 5 arrests and if one was arrested because of their actions, the chances of a conviction would be minimal because of the tainted evidence.

    But the police response was shocking and pathetic if not outright dangerous.

    But what can you expect in a country that has been in the grip of a moral panic about sex and which a dead man like Jimmy Savile can be pronounced guilty by police despite them admitting they have not and will not investigate claims against him and a tawdry newspaper that hires a so-called self appointed “child protection” campaigner who apparently couldn’t prevent for her own child from committing suicide.

    Thrown in an ex-police detective constable who has been allowed to claim he was an expert on zilch proof and a bizarre media that simply accepts all these oddities and promotes them?.

    There will be dire results for all these unprofessional activities and innocents will suffer.

  5. suetiggers
    April 22, 2013 at 10:22 pm

    Hopefully, yours work better than here in the U.S. I know of at least one young man 19 who was murdered in Maine because he and his 15 yr. old girlfriend were in love and her dad was against it and reported him. Another old man was beat with a baseball bat in Fl. and killed..his was a case of mistaken identity..in both cases, skinheads or kkk were involved.
    DO THE SEX OFFENDER LAWS REALLY WORK?
    adattv at 1:32 PM August 19, 2011
    “A 2008 report funded by the U.S. Justice Department found the original Megan’s Law in New Jersey
    to be a nonevent. The policy, researchers documented, “showed no demonstrable effect in reducing
    sexual re-offenses” and “has no effect on reducing the number of victims involved in sexual offenses.”
    The zero effect had a cost above zero — nearly $4 million annually for the 15 counties included in the
    study.”
    The sex offender registry has not been proven to have prevented a single sexual crime. Yet even from
    the U.S. Justice Department’s own study, they show that we are spending millions. This study showed
    four million from just fifteen counties. Millions, yes even billions of borrowed dollars. Billions of
    unfonded dollars being puled from states and ultimately local county sheriff and city police
    departments to constantly track a group of people who will likely never re-offend again. Mean while,the politicians, and judges grow rich and powerful and when removing the constationally guaranted
    rights of any of their citizens, they are actually in the process taking away all of our rights.

    This is a very well researched and well written article. Nice job of telling the truth.

  6. nacnud
    April 22, 2013 at 10:14 pm

    I feel sorry for the children of these pathetic inadequates, they’d be far more likely to be damaged by the ignorant, hateful, violent attitudes of their parents than some mythical groomer.

    As for the police, truly pathetic that they don’t do anything but not surprising. Not so much afraid of the tabloid brigade but the epitome of it.

  7. Jenny
    April 22, 2013 at 5:23 pm

    This is so typical of the police in this country.

    Rather than upset the public, they ignore a self confessed crime.

    Then the police wonder why we don’t trust them.

    As for the charities, they hate the truth – not least because they are to blame for the hysteria and panic in the first place.

  8. Arthur
    April 22, 2013 at 4:38 pm

    What is the point of a police force if they are going to choose who to arrest and who to ignore? Which social group is next and how do you know it won’t be you?

    This is brave article that confronts the ugly face of populism. I for one hope that the police crush these pseudo policemen who have taken the law into their own hands.

    Not to do so is to start down a very dangerous road indeed.

    • meridiana
      April 22, 2013 at 5:33 pm

      Another glaring example of police double standards concerns all those so-called ‘indecent images’ loosely classified as ‘Level 1’. The religious journalist Christina Odone was never prosecuted for possessing, making and distributing images (forChannel 4 TV) that have caused others to be prosecuted for possessing exactly the same images. Furthermore, these generic child-modelling images are deemed legal by the IWF, yet are illegal by the police, except when it comes to the likes of Odone bleating on in The Times about how immoral it is that they are, in fact, perfectly legal. She even gave the website url, which resulted in a surge in UK subscriptions!

      Such images make up the bulk of police image counts, and to successfully convict people for possession of these images, declared legal by the IWF (and Odone) is a national scandal. We must ask the police why Odone is still not a registered sex offender.

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