Caution for Indecent Images of Children
Simon Bailey, the National Police Chiefs’ Council lead for child protection, admitted in an interview with The Times that due to the increasing numbers of cases of alleged child sexual abuse, including indecent images of children, the police had reached what he called a “saturation point”.
The way in which the police are now dealing with these large volumes of cases is resolving cases involving low-risk offenders outside of court. This can be done a number of ways, and for indecent images cases it is now becoming more popular for offenders to be issued with a caution.
Reuben received a visit from his local police force and had his computer equipment seized for forensic examination. The very next morning he was online researching for indecent image specialists and came across Forrest Williams’ website. His call was answered by a lawyer who could help, and he instructed Forrest Williams during the first call in order to secure Steve Williams as his legal representative at his upcoming interview under caution, even though he would have been able to get a Duty Solicitor free of charge. Reuben knew he had done wrong and needed support, and he came to the right firm.
We took a full and detailed statement from Reuben to get a full understanding on what had happened, why it had happened, and some more details on Reuben as a person and what had made him reach this point. Reuben was relieved to be getting the support he required. Rueben was legally represented by Steve Williams after the police had concluded their forensic investigations, and Rueben was offered a caution for the offence.
A caution is a formal warning that can be issued where there is sufficient evidence for a prosecution, but it is not in the public interest to charge the offender. In order to accept a caution, a person must admit guilt to the offence. For indecent images offences, the offender must also sign the Sex Offenders’ Register.
The reason people can be offered a caution for such an offence is to streamline the high volume of suspects being investigated by the police for indecent images of children charges.
A caution can only be issued for these types of offences if three factors apply:
– the offender is suspected to pose a low risk to children
– all relevant computer equipment has been forensically examined subject to ‘triage’
– the investigation is limited to offences relating to possession, distribution or production of indecent images of children
Reuben had accessed a small volume of images over a short period of time. He expressed genuine remorse and was a man of good character with no previous convictions or cautions.
Issuing a caution to an offender means that they do not hold a criminal record, however, a police record will be generated for the police and courts to refer to in future, so that if any further offences were to be committed the offender would not be offered the opportunity for a caution again. A caution also has no bearing on your passport, any visa applications, and doesn’t need to be declared as victim. A caution will, however, show up on an enhanced DBS check, so may affect any job opportunities, particularly if they involve children.
Rueben was delighted with having the matter resolved by way of a caution. His feedback advised:
The service I received was very Good. There was a non-judgmental attitude throughout my case. I always felt I had support if needed. I feel a great relief. The outcome could have been so much worse; I feel that I was very lucky to be given just a caution.
If you would like some free initial advice regarding Indecent Images of Children, call Forrest Williams on 01623 600645.