Planning to have sex? We'll need 24-hours' notice, say police in North Yorkshire

Planning to have sex? We'll need 24-hours notice, say police in North Yorkshire

A man has been ordered to give police 24 hours notice before he has sex

Thursday, June 9, 2016

A 'sexual risk order' requiring a man acquitted of rape to give police 24-hours' notice if he plans to have sex has been branded "intrusive, unworkable and ridiculous" by a leading barrister. 

Sexual risk orders, which are issued by magistrates, were introduced in England and Wales in 2015.

They can be applied to anyone who the police believe poses a risk of sexual harm, even if they have never been convicted of a crime. Failure to comply with the notice could result in up to five years' imprisonment. 

The North Yorkshire man, who has an interest in sado-masochistic sex, was cleared of rape charges last year after being held on remand for 14 months.

The order says he "must disclose the details of any female, including her name, address and date of birth... at least 24 hours prior to any sexual activity taking place".

Barrister John Harrison told Julia Hartley-Brewer: "[The problem is] you have non-lawyers ruling on legal documents that have been drafted, that any lawyer would say are unworkable.

"The application is judged not on a criminal standard, but on the balance of probabilities.

"Effectively [the police] have total freedom to draw up orders."

The barrister added that the ruling is completely out of touch with real life.

"It is deeply intrusive, it is not something I think will work," he said. 

"The idea that the only people who have sex in this country are people who've had 24 hours to think about it is absolutely ridiculous."