Friday, 9 October 2015
Transgender Man Convicted Of Revenge Porn
23 year old Jesse Hawthorne has become the first transgender person in the UK to be convicted for posting 'revenge porn' images on the internet. Jesse reportedly posted the explicit images of his ex-girlfriend online after the couple split following his transition.
Jesse admitted to uploading the explicit images to Facebook with the intent to cause distress, and was subsequently issued with a restraining order.
District Judge Smith-Jones told the court, 'This was a very serious matter. It was more than just payback, it was revenge. You carried this out without regard to the thoughts and feelings of the victim.'
Reports state that Jesse fell out with his girlfriend, and eventually broke off their relationship, when she told Jesse, who was then identifying as female, that she dis not want him to transition to male. Following the break-up of their relationship Jesse returned to his ex-girlfriends home to retrieve a puppy that he had given her as a gift.
Newport Magistrates Court heard how when Jesse tried to take the puppy his ex-lover's new partner threw him against a wall. the following day he uploaded the two images to Facebook as an act of revenge.
Prosecutor Jamie Dewar told the court, 'He did it out of anger. The victim said she had sent the extremely intimate images to Jesse while they were in a relationship together. She felt distressed, alarmed, humiliated, and embarrassed by what she and all her Facebook friends saw.'
Jesse Hawthorne has been sentenced to 16 weeks in prison suspended for a year. He was also given a 25-day rehabilitation requirement and must do 150 hours unpaid work.
Siobhan Blake, Deputy Chief Crown Prosecutor for the Crown Prosecution Service Wales, said, 'I hope that this case serves as a further reminder that this type of vindictive behaviour is against the law and will not be tolerated. The distress caused by offenses of this nature is considerable. Those who engage in this type of activity should be in doubt that they can expect to find themselves in court.'
Even though Jesse did break the law and engage in the horrible act of revenge porn, it may be worth noting that he did so following his girlfriend leaving him following her not wanting him to transition, a physical assault by his ex-girlfriends new lover, and a campaign against him on social media where his ex and her friends tormented him by calling him a 'fucking freak', 'fucking Frankenstein' and a 'dyke on roids'.
Perhaps Jesse would not have engaged in such terrible behaviour is their were actually laws in place in Britain protecting transgender people from abuse, and that he felt any complaint raised against his treatment would have been taken seriously.
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