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Report recommends Victims should remain anonymous, until they are convicted

A team chosen by the government after the Belfast rape trial of 2018 has suggested that suspects who are associated with sex crimes shouldn’t be named when their cases are in progress. The names shall be disclosed only when they are convicted.

In certain cases, related to rape and other sexual offences there exist an anonymity during the trials where as in some other cases the suspects can be named.

If the suspects are convicted, then they could be named. But the disclosure of their names must not give clues about the victims. Victims have the right to be anonymous unless they want to express themselves to the media and name the person who attacked them. This was said by an expert group, chaired by barrister and NUI Galway law lecturer Tom O’Malley.

2018 Belfast Case

Rugby players Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding were set free from a rape case which had said to be occurred at a house party in Belfast. After this case the then ministry for justice asked Mr. O’Malley to carry out his findings.

The group clearly says that giving their own legal representations to the victims during trials will shatter the balance of the court.

However, it said new pretrial hearings should be recognized, at which plaintiffs would be officially represented. Any lawyer planning to question a plaintiff about their sexual past would need to apply to do so at a pretrial hearing.

According to the report professional training which prepares them with an understanding of the experience of victims of sexual crime will be given to judges and others of the justice system.

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