How we protect sex worker identity
If you have found yourself in the middle of a pornographic related internet harassment campaign, there could be many reasons why you don't seek help.
If you are a sex worker, there could be many reasons that you have personally, why you may not want to report an internet crime against you. Having your identity exposed may be one of the those. Protecting sex worker identity doesn't seem to be a greatly talked about subject and reports that reflect on not protecting sex worker identity gives oxygen, control and power to the harassers.
These harassers can be sextortion blackmailers, the sex film producers, the brothel owners, the pimps, the strip club owners, the 'so-called' guardians; whoever it is that made you feel like a hostage to your situation.
How easy it is to protect sex worker identity depends on their internet lawyer. The Crown Prosecution Service puts a great emphasis on the wording about the protection of identity of people as victims and witnesses in the courts and they promise to: 'address the specific need of a victim and where justified, seek to protect their identity by making an appropriate application to the court'.
Unfortunately, the Crown Prosecution Service's promise to protect identities is not automatically guaranteed for certain crimes but if you have appointed the right criminal internet lawyer, then you should be in safe hands. Protecting sex worker identity is important to us, as it is to you.
For all cases where identity is to be protected, a good internet lawyer will apply for the correct orders to the criminal and civil courts for you. It is important that you have the guidance of a lawyer who is exercised and experienced in the complexities of the orders, since it isn't as straightforward as it sounds and application at the beginning is paramount to the success of anonymity.
What happens in court to protect a sex worker's identity could go under the guidance where a witness is classed as intimidated by criminal proceedings. In these cases, there are a range of special measures like screens, live links and private hearings. There can be measures to protect a sex worker's identity, as a witness, for their whole lifetime (under Section 46 of that Act), but extra special measures are usually required for more protection, since this order does not stop the public and those present in court from seeing and hearing the witness.
A sex worker's name will not be read out if we ensured that as part of the order, names and addresses were not to be read out. Firstly, we apply for orders of 'anonymity' under the Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act 1992 that would entitle the victim to press 'anonymity', so that nobody could identify them. Sometimes, we would have to apply separately for other orders, say for instance, our sex worker client has given evidence against someone that has control over them. They won't want their name to be spoken out loud at the beginning, just to be written down and not in the public domain. They will be known as XCY or CBA , so they are not identifiable.
Yes, a sex worker's identity protection can be ensured. To ensure identity protection at court, your name may not be read out or you may be given a screen to protect your identity or you may appear by video link from another court room and only visible to the Judge. You may be granted a private hearing where the doors are closed and the public are excluded.
Identity protection isn't guaranteed because the judge has to consider many factors before making a decision but in most cases that we deal with, and because we do it thoroughly, considering all angles, they understand the need for and grant the identity protection. We make these applications at the beginning, so that you can be reassured throughout the litigation process, that ultimately, you identity is safe.
A sex worker can have a private hearing. Regarding the civil courts and protecting sex worker identity, under the civil procedure, the general rule is that all hearings are public. The good news is that the court does allow private hearings if one of the many matters that they list, as in most of our 'protecting sex worker identity' cases are satisfied, such as:
- Protection of identity
- Protection of interests
- Confidential information
- Publicity would defeat the object of the hearing
- It is necessary to have a private sitting in order for the proper administration of justice.
Because of the anticipation of all possible scenarios of a pornographic related internet case through experience and knowledge and our commitment to protecting you, you can rely on us.
Understanding the right amount of orders to apply for to ensure that everything is covered and the risk of the cost of identity exposure, through our holistic approach to cases, Cohen Davis can reassure their clients that if they say that their identity is protected, it most definitely will be.