Max Clifford has been convicted
We are very pleased with the verdict and sentencing in the Max Clifford sexual abuse case. The judge showed a very clear understanding of sexual violence: both the nature of sexual violence and the consequences of it on victims. Far too often of late, we have published comments made by judges who fundamentally misunderstand sexual violence and trauma focusing on the consequences to the perpetrator rather than the victims. We are pleased that this one judge demonstrated his knowledge and understanding, as outlined in his sentencing remarks here.
However, the criminal justice system as a whole is not victim-centred. We need more support for victims: both who choose to report and those who choose not to. We need better training for judges, police and prosecutors. Very few reported sexual violence crimes result in conviction because of systemic failures.
We are pleased that this one case resulted in a conviction, but this is an anomaly rather than evidence of our criminal justice system taking crimes of sexual violence seriously.
We need the CJS to do better for all victims.