After section 3

Part of Sexual Offences (Procedure and Evidence) (Scotland) Bill: Stage 3 – in the Scottish Parliament at 3:00 pm on 6th March 2002.

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Photo of Johann Lamont Johann Lamont Labour 3:00 pm, 6th March 2002

Does Phil Gallie agree that the proper place to debate anonymity for the accused in relation to particular crimes is in a debate about the rights of the accused in relation to a series of crimes? Phil Gallie is in danger of equating the rights of the accuser and of the accused for a specific crime such as rape. The danger of Phil Gallie's line is the suggestion that the situation of a complainer in a sexual offence case is different from that of other victims of crime. I would be concerned if Phil Gallie suggested that. I accept that there is a legitimate debate about the anonymity of the accused in some cases, but that must be seen in the context of the debate about the rights of the accused, not in the context of sexual offence cases. To discuss the issue in that context implies that there is something different about the complainer in such cases.