DRCC’s Response to PFAI’s Stuart Gilhooly’s interview on Drivetime
Wednesday, November 19th, 2014
As the representative of a victim representative organisation it was difficult to listen to a solicitor question the rule of law of another common law jurisdiction to the extent that Stuart Gilhooly did in his interview with Drivetime and to read extracts from the blog he put up on the PFAI website.
Our main concerns are for the victims of sexual crimes. How would the victim in this case have felt if she was listening to him?- how would other victims feel who may be thinking of reporting a rape? – We hope they would not be put off by Stuart Gilhooly’s ill judged comments.
Rape is the second most serious crime on our statute books. It carries the possibility of a life sentence. It is one of the most under-reported crimes. Only 1 in 10 report the crime. So many many perpetrators commit this crime with impunity. When a victim reports the crime and the case goes to court and the perpetrator is found guilty and given an appropriate sentence, the victim is doing all of us in society a service.
Rape is the absence of consent – intoxication is not a defence – The term ‘alleged’ as used by Stuart Gilhooly in this instance is no longer applicable as Ched Evans is a convicted person and he remains a convicted person until he is exonerated. He was found guilty in a court of law by a jury of his peers. He was unsuccessful in his appeal in a court of three judges. His sentence is under further review and it is for that tribunal, not a solicitor in this jurisdiction, to make its judgement.
For anyone affected by these comments or who needs further support please call the National 24-Hour Helpline 1800 77 88 88.