CPS secures first upskirting convictions
Four men have been convicted so far under the new 'upskirting' legislation, the Crown Prosecution Service can reveal.
Prosecutors have brought charges of both recording and operating equipment under clothing without consent, using the Voyeurism (Offences) Act which came into force in England and Wales on 12 April.
Siobhan Blake, CPS national lead for sexual offence prosecutions, said: “Upskirting is a humiliating violation that leaves victims feeling degraded and distressed.
“It is really positive to see our prosecutors making use of the new legislation, with four men so far convicted of this repulsive offence.”
The first successful prosecution was against Salim Ahmed, 33, in early July. The Bulgarian shop worker was spotted by police over a two-hour period filming on his iPhone at the entrance to Wireless Festival in Finsbury Park, north London.
When his phone was seized, 16 recordings taken under women’s skirts or dresses were discovered – none of whom were identified.
Michael Adjetey, 28, was the second person convicted after being caught on CCTV taking pictures of women’s buttocks at a TK Maxx store in Hackney, east London, on 16 and 17 July. He subsequently admitted he had taken hundreds of upskirting photos.
Thomas Hetherington, 21, was the first to be confronted and reported directly by his victim for the new offence after targeting her at a bus depot in Wakefield, West Yorkshire, on 23 July.
He pleaded guilty to upskirting on 13 August - making him the third person to be convicted.
Last week, lawyer Daren Timpson-Hunt took the total to four after he admitted taking covert images of a London Underground passenger on her way to an interview in June.
He will be sentenced at Westminster Magistrates’ Court tomorrow (26 September).
Ms Blake added: “All of the victims were simply going about their business on public transport, shopping or attending events when they were opportunistically targeted.
“The CPS takes this behaviour extremely seriously and anyone engaging in it can expect to face criminal charges.”
For more information about how the CPS prosecutes upskirting offences, see our legal guidance.
Notes to editors
- Salim Ahmed (DOB: 24/03/86), of Tottenham, London, pleaded guilty to one count of recording an image under clothing to observe another without consent at Highbury Corner Magistrates’ Court on 8 July. He was sentenced to a community order with a three-month curfew requirement
- Michael Adjetey (DOB: 18/08/1991), of Newham, London, admitted two counts of operating equipment beneath the clothing of another without their consent at Thames Magistrates’ Court on 31 July. He was sentenced to a two-year community order, with a notification period (commonly referred to as being placed on the sex offenders’ register) of five years
- Thomas Hetherington (DOB: 15/07/1998), of Wakefield, pleaded guilty to one count of recording an image under clothing without consent at Leeds District Magistrates’ Court on 13 August. He was sentenced on 10 September to a two-year community order with a notification period of five years
- Daren Timpson-Hunt (DOB: 12/05/65), of Stanford-le-Hope, Essex, pleaded guilty at Westminster Magistrates’ Court to one count of operating equipment beneath the clothing of another without consent on 19 September
- Siobhan Blake is the Chief Crown Prosecutor for Mersey-Cheshire and CPS national lead for rape and sexual offences.