I’m not a fan of Brand but am I the only one who thinks these claims of sexual attacks from years ago have to stop…I expect this chap was no angel but its 21 years since this alleged situation happened…and whilst we all wait for the outcome his life and career is in shatters. No innocent till proved guilty here …guilty by media!
I don’t think claims of historic sexual abuse should have to stop - there should not be any timescale cut-off point for bringing sexual crimes to trial.
However, airing the accusations in the media and having trial by media in a mass media feeding frenzy is what needs to stop.
It is not right that someone’s life, reputation and career should be damaged by a criminal allegation that has not even been looked at by the police to decide if there is sufficient evidence to pass the CPS grounds for charging and trial.
I understand it would be difficult for anyone who had experienced historic sexual abuse to go to the police and expect to be believed - especially if the alleged abuser was a “celebrity” - we have seen before how often victims were disbelieved in the past - and I can see how an unofficial journalist-type investigation where several people are interviewed and they realise they were “not the only ones” may then feel empowered to make an official complaint to the police.
This type of publicity has helped to uncover a lot of historic abuse by some celebrities. Since the “me too” movement and the successful conviction of some rich, powerful or celebrity status individuals, the police must be more aware of the need to investigate every complaint seriously, so maybe it’s time for this type of allegation to be referred directly to the police instead of journalists splashing it all over the media first.
The video sharing platform said it had taken action following "serious allegations" of rape and sexual assaults, which Brand denies.
The timeline of events
Friday: Russell Brand posts a two-and-a-half minute video to his social media channels denying allegations he described as “serious”, but did not go into detail
Saturday afternoon: The Sunday Times publishes an investigation piece, in collaboration with the The Times and Channel 4, into allegations Brand sexually assaulted four women between 2006 and 2013
Saturday evening: Channel 4 airs its investigation into the allegations. At the same time, Brand plays a packed live show in Wembley
Sunday: Broadcasters including the BBC, Channel 4 and Banijay UK announce internal investigations, and a women’s charity terminates partnership with Brand. The Met Police says it is also looking at the allegations
Monday morning: Brand’s talent agency and two book publishers part ways with him. One of Brand’s accusers appears on the BBC’s Woman’s Hour programme
Monday afternoon: The Met Police announces it has received a report of an alleged sexual assault in 2003 following the media investigations into Brand. The remainder of Brand’s live tour is postponed
Tuesday morning: YouTube says it has suspended Russell Brand’s channels from making money from adverts for “violating” its “creator responsibility policy”
What has happened today?
The BBC has removed some programmes from its iPlayer and Sounds sites that feature Russell Brand
A spokesman says the corporation "assessed that it [the content] now falls below public expectations”
An episode of QI and podcast with Joe Wicks are no longer available
Earlier, it was announced that YouTube has stopped Brand making money from his videos on the platform
YouTube said: “If a creator’s off-platform behaviour harms our users, employees or ecosystem, we take action to protect the community”
Brand has not spoken publicly since Friday, but denies the allegations of sexual assault and misconduct made against him in the joint Times, Sunday Times, and Channel 4 investigation
I keep thinking about what the ghastly Thatcher said about trial by media
And while reluctant to agree with the witch on anything, taken out of context and in the abstract, it sounds about right
“The freedom of peoples depends fundamentally on the rule of law, a fair legal system. The place to have trials or accusations is a court of law, the Common Law that has come right up from Magna Carta, which has come right up through the British courts – a court of law is the place where you deal with these matters. If you ever get trial by television or guilt by accusation, that day freedom dies because you have not had it done with all of the careful rules that have developed in a court of law. Press and television rely on freedom. Those who rely on freedom must uphold the rule of law and have a duty and a responsibility to do so and not try to substitute their own system for it.”
But she only said that because she didn’t like the investigations into the IRA killings
And that’s the problem with trying to restrict what the media are allowed to investigate and report on
It’s important they’re allowed to bring things into the spotlight that have previously gone unnoticed and such investigations have often given a voice to people who didn’t previously feel they had anywhere to turn