Anger at rape lies fine

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A CHARITY helping men facing false rape allegations has criticised a decision not to prosecute a Sheffield woman who caused panic in a community after claiming two men had attacked her.

The 41-year-old woman, from Darnall, was issued with an £80 Fixed Penalty Notice for wasting police time.

She claimed the men assaulted her on land off Greenland Road in January.

But detectives uncovered evidence which contradicted her version of events and she eventually admitted she had made her allegation up.

Women in Darnall demanded increased police patrols saying they no longer felt safe on the streets.

Two men were also arrested on suspicion of rape.

Ian Kelly, legal adviser with UK Men’s Aid, a charity which offers legal advice to men falsely accused of rape, said: “A woman who makes a false allegation of rape does no favours to those who have genuinely been raped.

“As a deterrent those who make false rape allegations should be automatically charged with attempting to pervert the course of justice.

“In this case the reputations of two men have been blackened and unfortunately this is not an isolated incident. ”

A Rape Crisis spokeswoman said: “Contrary to popular perception, the rate of false allegations of rape is similar to that of any other serious crime, around three per cent.

“By contrast, it’s believed that over 85 per cent of the one in five women in this country who will experience some form of sexual violence in their lifetimes will never report to the police.

“Sadly, the persistence in focusing on the unrepresentative few women who do falsely report gives the general public a skewed perception of this situation’s prevalence, thus perpetuating a social environment in which women are routinely disbelieved.”

Police said the woman’s “previous good character” was taken into account in the decision not to prosecute.