Sussex

Revenge porn man's caution 'correct', Sussex Police say

Revenge porn concept image Image copyright PA
Image caption Posting revenge porn became an offence in April 2015

The decision to caution a man who posted revenge porn images online was correct, a police force has said.

The 36-year-old from Eastbourne uploaded two sexually explicit pictures of his ex-partner and non-sexual images of three women with offensive captions.

He was arrested and cautioned in April after the victims contacted Sussex Police.

The force decided to review the case following criticism but has concluded the decision to caution was "correct".

'Subjective' decision

Supt Nick May said: "These incidents have generated a lot of public interest as to whether or not the police made the correct decision.

"I fully understand the concern and upset it has caused, and apologise for this, especially to the young women involved.

"We understand that such offences make victims feel very vulnerable so making a decision like this isn't easy."

He said he had personally spoken to the victims and reassured them that their concerns were taken seriously.

He added: "We have gone back and painstakingly reviewed the evidence available... and taking everything into account that we knew at the time, our decision to caution for the offences disclosed was a correct decision in the circumstances."

He said decisions to caution are "often complex" and the final decision is a subjective one but he said lessons had been learnt from the case.

Revenge porn became an offence in April 2015 and refers to the act of a partner or ex-partner purposefully distributing sexual images or videos without the other person's consent.

Police said the man, who has not been named, has "made full admissions and expressed remorse".

But a victim's mother, Eastbourne MP Caroline Ansell and Polly Neate, boss of charity Woman's Aid criticised the force for issuing the caution.

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