Sunday, 28 October 2007

On yer bike

An unbelievable story in the Telegraph today. If it really is true it illustrates just how bonkers this country has become.
Robert Stewart was discovered in his locked room, wearing only a T-shirt and gyrating his hips against a bike as if to simulate a sexual act.
Now, in my mind, having sex with a bike rates as some way less depraved than having anal intercourse with a stranger, which is perfectly legal, in private, and, in fact, is apparently practiced by some of our political masters.
Poor Mr Stewart, however, has been placed on the sex offenders register. This would be funny if it was not such a stark example of the Judiciary misusing it's power. While it seems Mr Stewart may be going through a bad patch (he lives in a hostel), placing him on the sex offenders list will essentially prevent him ever getting employment and will restrict the chance of him ever returning to normal society.
And what exactly was his crime? The article doesn't state the bike's age or whether it consented to the act but I was not aware the law took this into consideration. Mr Stewart had taken the trouble to lock his room so the act was in private. He was only caught because the cleaners had used a master key to enter his room. Contrast this to the firemen who were fined £1000 and demoted after a complaint that they had disturbed a quartet of homosexuals engaged in public (and therefore illegal) sex. The complainant and his partners did not face prosecution.
So essentially Mr Stewart has been criminalised for using an inanimate object as a masturbatory aid in the privacy of his own locked room. A quick look at the sort of online adult shops we are not allowed to access from work suggests that he might not be the first person to have done this and I am given to understand that such devices are on sale in Boots up and down the country.
Perhaps the story has not been accurately reported and perhaps there was someone strapped to the bike against their will at the time but, to me, the Law looks like an ass here and I hope the judgment is reversed and Mr Stewart awarded a six-figure sum in compensation for defamation and mental anguish. On the other hand he doesn't seem like the sort of person who could afford Max Clifford or, the late, George Carman QC

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