U-turn over rape law is 'common sense', says MP

A U-TURN over anonymity for rape defendants is the coalition Government’s “first climbdown”, a critical MP has claimed.

Caroline Flint, Labour member for Don Valley, said the proposal to censor the names of the accused in sex cases would only reinforce the myth that the women reporting such crimes were lying.

She secured an adjournment debate to ask Justice Minister Crispin Blunt about the controversial measure in June.

The Government has since abandoned the idea and Ms Flint said that the Government had finally seen sense over the “dangerous” plans.

“It happened because Labour took up the issue, built a coalition of its own, and forced the Government to back down,” she added.

“There was never any reason to single out rape suspects for special treatment.

“It sent a clear message that victims of rape were not be believed. The Government should apologise for the distress this policy has caused.

“They tried to hide the fact they were dropping this policy, but they got this one badly wrong. They can’t disguise the fact that this is their first u-turn.”

Mr Blunt confirmed: “The Government is only considering non-legislative options on this matter.”