This week’s question looks at what is perhaps the most uncomfortable case to arise from the courts this month; it is the case of the paedophile, Neil Wilson, who was accused of abusing a 13-year-old girl, who in turn, was branded “predatory”, by the judge in court. Human rights barrister, Barbara Hewson, also questions the subsequent criticisms of the judge and the prosecutor in the case.
The case initially led to Wilson effectively being able to walk free (he was given an 8 month jail term, suspended for 2 years ), but since the furore over this turn of events, The Guardian now reports that Wilson has had his sentence increased to a 12 months suspended jail term, on a technicality.
Our question to you this week then, is this: should we mitigate the sexual behaviours of 13-year-old girls based upon their experience and maturity or should we take the view that 13-year-old girls who are ‘wise beyond their years’ in this respect need our protection?
We feel so strongly about this issue, we’ll be wading into the debate with you shortly.
Over to you…..