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Last Updated: Thursday, 16 August 2007, 14:53 GMT 15:53 UK
Porn barrister loses appeal bid
A barrister convicted of possessing child porn images and filming up women's skirts in supermarkets has lost an appeal against his conviction.

Simon Austin Hamilton's claim, that filming up skirts had not outraged public decency because no-one saw what he did, was rejected by appeal judges.

But his jail term was cut by nine months after judges said his overall prison sentence was too long.

Hamilton, 36, formerly of Bosham, West Sussex, is now serving three years.

You've described me as a complete pervert and I wouldn't argue with that
Simon Austin Hamilton
When he was arrested, he told police: "You've described me as a complete pervert and I wouldn't argue with that.

"Being a pervert is not illegal."

Lord Justice Thomas, sitting at the Court of Appeal with Mr Justice Aitkens and Dame Heather Steel, said jurors in the original trial at Canterbury Crown Court were entitled to convict Hamilton.

He said the jury must have concluded he was "capable of being seen by those in the supermarket".

The judge said the principle was that the public "are to be protected" from acts "of a nature that outrages public decency and which are capable of being seen".

'Up-skirting' habit

Hamilton, who moved from Sussex to Haringey, north London, used a camera hidden in a rucksack with its lens pointing upwards to film shoppers in Chichester supermarkets.

He said he gave up his "up-skirting" habit when he was called to the Bar in 2001, because his habit was no longer "appropriate or convenient".

He claimed his pleasure was in building a collection and denied gaining any sexual gratification.

Hamilton was found guilty of five filming offences, and nine child porn charges, last April.

Judges ordered the nine months he received for the filming offences should be served concurrently with the three-year term imposed for possessing child porn images downloaded from the web.




SEE ALSO
Barrister jailed for child porn
27 Apr 06 |  England
Lawyer 'stored indecent images'
21 Apr 06 |  England

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