Article Title:Fundamentalist free speech at a grave cost
Category:New Zealand Daily News
Author or News Staff
Published on:15th November 2003 - 12:00 pm
Story ID:2113
Text:Concerns that a court ruling made two years ago that allowed freedom of speech for antigay fundamentalists would loosen the laws around child porn have become a practical reality. In June 2001, the Court of Appeal overturned a decision by the Board of Review restricting the distribution of two antigay hate videos, “Gay Rights: Special Rights” and “AIDS: What You Haven't Been Told”. “The Court of Appeal said that "matters such as sex" were limited to depictions of activity, and did not include the expression of opinion or attitude,” chief censor Bill Hastings told in 2001. They defined “matters such as sex” to be explicit depictions of sexual violence or torture. This has now resulted in a man who secretly filmed naked 10-year-old boys in a swimming pool changing room escaping uncharged because the video he made could not be technically classified as “objectionable”. "It looked like it had been taken from a bag full of clothing and that it was put on a bench to watch all the boys as they got changed. It could only be recorded for one reason – to satisfy the fantasy of the person who took it,” Hastings said. The Classification Office had been receiving four or five videos of this type per year, but this was now dwindling as police and Internal Affairs realised that little could be done about them. Hastings said the issue has become more of a concern now because of new mobile phone technology that makes surreptitious filming easier, and that the law loophole needs to be looked into, a call supported by mobile phone company Vodafone. "It doesn't fall within the Crimes Act, it doesn't fall within the Human Rights Act. The Privacy Act doesn't allow for bans. You might be able to take a claim for breach of privacy but that's about it,” Hastings said.    
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