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Ched Evans: The Guardian ignores the facts in favour of an agenda

by | 18th, October 2016

As the Sun vies for the woman’s story, the Guardian continues to focus on Ched Evans, a man jailed and vilified for a crime he did not commit. A depraved young man? Yes. A criminal? No. The Guardian’s Opinion column tells readers:

The verdict of a jury last Friday that found Ched Evans not guilty of rape appears to be a devastating setback for justice for rape victims. The footballer admits that he had sex with a woman he barely knew, who was drunk, and to whom he addressed not a word. He was convicted by the first jury to try him in 2011. But at his retrial, the jury decided they could not be certain that the woman had not consented, a verdict they reached after they had heard evidence that she had behaved in a similar manner with two other men at around the same time.

You could stop reading right there. She was not a rape victim. The jury heard the evidence, we did not. But let’s read on. And see if you can spot any prejudice at work.

Everything about this case stinks.

Yes. Everything about this ugly case is desperately awful.

A rich young man who on his own admission behaved in a way that most people would find unacceptable is found not guilty, while his victim, a young woman who was only 19 at the time, has had to move house five times, change her identity twice after Twitter trolls outed her on social media, and now has her alleged sexual history spread over the tabloids.

On small thing: he went to prison for over two years, having been sentenced to five years inside and getting out early for good behaviour.

The Guardian fails to mention that.

Second big thing: she was not his victim. He did not rape her.

As for unacceptable behaviour, this was rape. We can all agree, that rape is a hideous thing to be accused of. He was not charged with unacceptable behaviour. It was rape. Put that against your name and see how it looks on CVs, obituaries and family albums.

As for his wealth, would it have matted less if the women had been rich, or if he’d have been poor? What did cash have to do with it? The Guardian’s round-up smells of prejudice. And wasn’t he young at the time of that awful night, too, “only” 22 years old.

It is true that not all the evidence that Mr Evans’ legal team finally won on was available at the first trial.

In a criminal case evidence matters. And if he only “finally” won when all the evidence was in, wasn’t he unfairly jailed when it wasn’t? Why not mention that?

A subsequent appeal against conviction was dismissed. Only after a new legal team was employed was the original evidence reconsidered and the witnesses re-interviewed. A new defence was presented to the Criminal Cases Review Commission. The court of appeal considered the new evidence and decided that it met the condition of “similar fact”: that meant there could be a retrial, and the new evidence of sexual behaviour could be introduced. Explaining her reasons, Lady Justice Hallett admitted she did so with “a considerable degree of hesitation”.

And there’s another miss in the Guardian’s monocular round-up. His conviction was quashed.

 



Posted: 18th, October 2016 | In: Reviews Comment | TrackBack | Permalink