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Feb 20, 2019

The Attorney General Weighs In on Urgent Need for Cyber Bullying Legislation

The wholesale distribution of pornographic images over the weekend on social media has raised the issue of cyber bullying and the urgent need for legislation to be passed to combat the malicious spread of damaging material.  Those laws have been long in the making, despite the constant flood of lewd and sexually explicit material being shared online.  The Office of the Attorney General has been involved in the drafting of a new piece of legislation to address cyber bullying.  According to Michael Peyrefitte, the AG’s ministry is working with several other government agencies to ensure that the new cyber bullying law will cover all areas of harmful online activity.

 

Michael Peyrefitte

Michael Peyrefitte, Attorney General

“We have been working on it to ensure that not only can we capture when it happens or capture when these videos, especially when minors are put into the public.  But we have to make sure that we are able to tie it to a particular individual.  Many times when people are caught electronically they claim they were hacked, they claim that somebody stole their computer, they claim that’s not their phone.  We also have to make sure that the legislation is airtight so that when we charge someone they don’t just get off simply because of a technicality in the real sense.  So we are working on it, we are fine-tuning it, we are focusing mainly on the ones involving minors because then if a child is underage, not legally allowed to have sex then that is extremely troubling for us and we want to address that.  In terms of adults, consenting adults who may even be willing to participate or accept videos of them engaging in that activity, if they don’t consent for it to be released then we also have to look at that piece of legislation.  But we are also working with the Ministry of Human Development, the Special Envoy, the D.P.P. and CITO because we need to develop a computer and internet cyber world policy to determine how do we track these people, how do we find them, how do we prosecute them and how do we get convictions for those people who have broken the law.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“It would seem however, that we are a bit slow in catching up with laws that have been put in place in other jurisdictions to either prevent or mitigate these kinds of activities.”

 

Michael Peyrefitte

“And in those jurisdictions where they were quick to put in laws, they were found to be full of holes.  We don’t want that to happen to us.  We don’t want to have a law just to have a law and then its weak and then perpetrators walk free and then you hear the judicial system is corrupt.”

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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