Another (this time English) Scandal about a teacher in love with a student—the essence of Freedom is to be left alone, to be able to go and leave where you aren’t happy and go somewhere else, and, honestly Megan Stammers and Jeremy Forrest were NOT threats to public safety or security—they just wanted to be happy….


HEADLINE: FUGITIVE LOVERS MEGAN STAMMERS & JEREMY FORREST ARRESTED IN BORDEAUX—the history of Abelard & Heloise repeated 1000 years later…..

Nothing in the Anglo-American world is sillier or more sadly symptomatic of our congenital stupidity and hypocrisy as a society than the periodic hand-wringing that occurs when a teacher (male or female) is found in love or ((((worse, the very horror of it all!!!)))  I shutter even to imagine such a thing….I faint away….then wake up) have sex with a student…..

Nothing is stupider, in any event, than our hypocrisy when it comes to sex as exemplified in Lewinsky & Clinton…. and similar idiotic episodes….

The relationship of a good student and his or her teacher can be very close and intimate, and this is NATURAL and not an evil thing…. yet from Blanche Dubois in Streetcar Named Desire people are condemned and lives are ruined by nosy (I’d say extremely JEALOUS) people who just can’t let a good thing like REAL LOVE flourish and grow—or really bad relationships work their course and teach people a lesson—NO, the State and the police have to get involved and PROTECT the people—Damn them all (the State and the Police), instead of damning people’s naturally free will and quest for happiness…. “IS happiness such a common thing that you have to squelch it whenever you see it?”

Whenever such a news story arises I literally get sick at my stomach.   We live in a society PERMEATED by sexual advertising and the comercialisation of sex a la puissance treize….. So Why are we so shocked when the advertising combines with adolescent hormones and normal adult lust and longing for youth and configures into a great conflagration of love—the most beautiful thing in the world… Don’t we all learn from our pastors, preachers and rectors that “Sex is the filthiest most disgusting thing in the world, so you must ONLY share it with someone you love?” 

The latest story to catch MY attention just ended in the tragedy of a 15 year old girl running away with her 30 year old Mathematics teacher (what a nerdy girl she must be, right?) and then getting caught in Bordeaux thanks to a European Arrest Warrant—this teaches us how much regionalization enhances Freedom—it used to be you only had to make it “to the county line” to escape from the law—now you have to … what, go from England to Russia or Morocco if you want to get away from English Prudes and Priggs?   The nearest thing I’ve found on-line to my point of view was published by a lady who identifies her blog with the Chariot of Boadicea, Queen of the Iceni in East Anglia, whom I’ve identified previously on this blog as one of the earliest reasons why I went into archaeology in the first place….

Boadicea’s Chariot

Hic Leges Icenorum Observantur
  To Sir, with love!

To Sir, with love!

Does anybody else out there think that a veritable mountain is being constructed from the remains of a scattered molehill with regards to a particular elopement, details of which seem to be dominating all sectors of the British media?

While I accept that Ms Stammer is under age, being a few months short of her 16th birthday, and thus needing of protection, I cannot help questioning whether she really would be damaged by the relationship were it allowed to be continued without the interference of those people whom Chief Whips should avoid calling plebs.

For all his foolish naivitee, Mr Forrest does genuinely appear to be in love with the girl. There does not seem to be any question of grooming or other more sinister motives. This incident aside, he appears to be a pleasant, educated, intelligent and respectable chap. Megan’s father described him as a ‘good bloke’.

Megan herself seems to be a well balanced teenager from a good family. There are no overt signs of troubling behaviour. Apart from her age, she does not come across as a particularly vulnerable individual. She seemed entirely complicit and the relationship has clearly been going on for a long while. It would appear that their elopement was prompted by the sudden interest shown, by those who must not be called plebs. (Of course they screwed that up too.) Had the relationship been tolerated, it might well have fizzled out of its own accord, or quietly simmered away until such time as society was willing to be less judgmental. Other cultures around the world would not find the disparities in ages to be unusual.

Does anybody really feel that her life (his life is bound to be considered irrelevant) will be better if the pair are caught and he is sent to jail for abduction and statutory rape and whatever else Rupert Murdoch, sorry I mean the police decide to charge him with. It is also worth asking, is the expense of tracking them down really justified?

If I ruled the world, I would advise them to come back of their own accord, without charges being pressed. I would put them in different schools and allow them to have telephone contact but all physical contact must be in the presence of a chaperon, until she came of age.

I submit that just because an act happens to be in breach of the law, it does not mean it is wrong.

One blogger likes this.
  • rebecca2000
  1. September 26, 2012 at 8:45 am | #1

    Can somebody please insert the Lulu song. My internet connection is slower than a striking slug in the dead of winter. Thank you.

  2. Soutie
    September 26, 2012 at 8:50 am | #2

    Howzit sipu, you back in the Mother City?

    Having two daughters and perhaps a slightly more conservative view (old fashioned perhaps) to family life than some, I’d shoot anyone who left the country with one of my 15 year olds.

    Yes, I’d track him down, (and if I couldn’t, I’d pay others to) this in my view is completely unacceptable and I’m afraid when people start thinking that for 30 year old men to ‘elope’ with 15 year olds is anywhere approaching normal behaviour the world will be in a sorry state.

    There, got that off my chest ;)

  3. September 26, 2012 at 9:11 am | #3

    Hi Soutie, yup, I have been back here for a few weeks.

    While I understand your perspective, it does not answer the question about what is best for your daughter. Were she to be involved in a relationship, similar to that of Ms Stammers and Mr Forrest, it might do you a power of good to shoot him, but would it do her any good?

    If a river is going to flood your town, you don’t try and stop it completely by damming the flow, because the dam could break and wreak even more damage. Rather, you build levees and dykes to guide the water along a less hazardous path. I suggest a similar strategy would be better applied in dealing with this type of relationship. Over reaction by protective parents and/or the law, usually backfires.

    It always strikes me as bizarre that so few people learn from the Romeo and Juliet parable.

  4. September 26, 2012 at 9:32 am | #4

    Sipu, interesting perspectives from you and Soutie. I would guess this relationship (she and the teacher) is fuelled by passionate nights rather than a love of poetry and I guess to this is why the law seeks to protect a vulnerable girl from – in this case – an experienced maths teacher, though I doubt whether in this case he really knows what 2 + 2 come to. I take on board everything you say and can agree in part; I do think the media attention is unhelpful here. You make good advice in your comment no.3.

    I would say it is reasonable for her parents to expect some confirmatory news from their daughter but so much media attention has probably dashed that hope as any attempted signal may well lead to the discovery of their location.

  5. September 26, 2012 at 10:06 am | #5

    Sipu; I have to disagree and invoke the laws and conventions of my profession. There are, of course, too many rules and common sense is often indistinguishable from the insanity of the rule book. But teachers are in loco parentis; this is what we are told before we ever set foot in the classroom, and this sort of carry on is in breach of all that.

  6. Soutie
    September 26, 2012 at 10:43 am | #6

    Sipu :

    While I understand your perspective, it does not answer the question about what is best for your daughter…..

    It always strikes me as bizarre that so few people learn from the Romeo and Juliet parable.

    Ja well, I know what’s not best, flitting off with a married man, who I assume is now unemployed and perhaps unemployable is certainly not best. Do they even have any money? Perhaps he’s filled her mind with so much drivel that they’re going to do a Bonnie and Clyde!

    Is this Forrest divorced or separated?

    Was Romeo married?

  7. Boadicea
    September 26, 2012 at 2:08 pm | #7

    I had to go and find out about this story. In my mind, this post is somewhat similar to Sheona’s post “How young is too young?’.

    I know all about the laws and conventions (Claire) and the emotions and natural reactions of parents (Soutie) – but I have to say that arbitrary age limits do not take account of the differences in the way individuals mature.

    I recall my grand-daughter’s birthday party, where my son-in-law had to seek the protection of my daughter and me from one of her friends – an incredibly knowing and predatory nine year old… I have no doubt that the press, the law and everyone else would have been quite horrified when she, as I see it inevitably, got involved with an older male. Her mother, who I met, obviously had no idea what her daughter was like and the poor guy who got caught up with her would have been slaughtered by mother, press, public and police alike…

    Then there were my fourteen year old students who tried to get me to accept a drink from their 30+ year old ‘boy-friends’ in a local pub. They were bright, vivacious young girls – and all I could do was point them in the direction of the local Marie Stopes Clinic. I knew I couldn’t stop them ‘dating’ older men – the least I could do was make sure that they didn’t suffer the ultimate penalty for what they were doing… I got a fair amount of criticism from some teachers, who asked me how I’d feel if someone gave my daughters that advice. I asserted that I’d be delighted for someone, anyone, to provide my daughters with sound advice if they felt they couldn’t talk to me.

    And then, I remember my 29 year old female co-teacher who, having married some six months earlier, eloped with one of her 17 year old male students.

    Life is messy – because individuals are individuals. It would all be so easy if the Little nine-year-old Lolita and my students had not matured so early – or had had parents who guided them better.

    Of course, it would have been better had my 29 year old friend and Mr Forrest controlled themselves – but life isn’t like that. And no one seems to ask how the 17 year old, that my friend eloped with, or Megan Stammers behaved…

    Don’t get me wrong. I do think that people, male or female. in positions of authority, like teachers, should understand and be sufficiently mature, not to abuse their positions. But, I also acknowledge that there are two sides to every story .

  8. September 26, 2012 at 2:24 pm | #8

    Thank you Boadicea for such a balanced and experienced view. I know a girl, now about 23, who when she was 15 was extremely precocious and had boyfriends well into their 20s, which shocked many of her friends and their parents more so. Her own, single-parent mother realised that she had no hope of preventing such behaviour and so rather than fight it she accepted it, thus allowing the girl to trust her. The daughter has turned out rather well albeit with some quite scary edges. She is as bright as anything with a sharp tongue. She dumped her long time boyfriend and now dates men closer to her in age.

  9. September 26, 2012 at 2:58 pm | #9

    The deal is, that the man was a teacher at the girl’s school. Relationships are therefore a no-no. Full. Stop.

  10. Janus
    September 26, 2012 at 3:03 pm | #10

    Four daughters. At fifteen absolutley sure they knew their own minds about everything. Would I have ‘allowed’ them to go off with a teacher? No. Would they have gone? Possibly. Which other laws should I have ‘allowed’ them to break?

  11. September 26, 2012 at 3:10 pm | #11

    Hi Claire, I fully accept and understand the conventions and rules by which you must do your job. In no way am I encouraging this sort of behaviour, but by the same token nor do I believe that everything in life is absolute. In attempting to protect the girl, there is a real danger of throwing the baby out with the bathwater. There is no way that anybody can guarantee that by separating her from this man, she will turn out to be any happier and better balanced than if she had been allowed to continue the relationship with considered, sympathetic advice and guidance. Of course the teacher should have stopped it at the first sign, but people, even mature adults, do not always behave rationally when it comes to affairs of the heart. I am sure we all know of and have maybe even experienced situations where apparently happily married adults have been prepared to walk away from their spouses based on a moment of realisation or belief that somebody else loves them. And it can be just that, a single moment that is a switch. It takes considerable self-control and possible sacrifice to prevent it from going any further even requiring changing jobs and relocating. But if it is not nipped in the bud, the damage can be great and no amount of reason can undo it. Love does not do reason. These two have made a huge commitment to each other. I doubt it can be undone without tremendous hurt. In attempting to resolve the problem, it is not the letter of the law that should take precedence but its spirit and that is to the best for as many people as possible,

    Regardless of how one feels about the teacher, he too is a human being and if we are going to care about others, we should care about him as well. He should not be written off because of what he has done. He is foolish and weak, but he is not evil. (I assume that based on what we have been told so far.)

    In my opinion. the police should stay out of it and should leave it to the respective families to deal with. The families care about the people. The police only care about statistics and their record.

  12. September 26, 2012 at 3:37 pm | #12

    When push comes to shove primal feelings will overpower the law every time.

    BTW am I allowed back as a blogger ?

  13. September 26, 2012 at 4:01 pm | #13

    Hi Bravo, I think I understand how your history and background have influenced your views with regards to the law. You have had to uphold it for most of your working life, or so I believe, and so you hold it with more sanctity than I do. For me the law is a tool to help society thrive, it is not and should not be an end in and of itself. The law is often wrong and that is why laws are often changed. In an evolving society where the rules governing propriety and personal freedoms are becoming increasingly blurred, many laws are unquestionably anachronistic and inappropriate. Add to that the fact that there are grey areas and mitigating circumstances and it becomes clear that the letter of the law is not inviolate.

    I am not saying that teachers should be allowed to date their pupils. The school and the authorities should do what they can to prevent such a thing happening. But they did not stop it in this case. It happened, so now they have to deal with it. Forcing the pair back to Britain, throwing him in jail and attaching a Sexual Offenders Order on him, and ensuring he never works as a teacher again, all of which I suspect will happen, will achieve very little that is positive and a great deal that is negative, not least of which will be immense damage to the girl and her relationship with her parents, her school and the police. Her loyalty is to the teacher and likely to remain that way, especially when he is arrested and punished. Unless she realises of her own accord, what a mistake she has made, no amount of police intervention is going to make her change her mind.

    Just because she is 15 and he is her teacher it does not mean that the relationship can not work out well.

  14. September 26, 2012 at 4:06 pm | #14

    PapaG, I agree the self-serving nature of the media is pretty appalling. The Daily Telegraph has become every bit as trashy as most other red tops. Sky News is Murdoch at his worst.

  15. September 26, 2012 at 4:07 pm | #15

    Hi Jazz, welcome back.

  16. September 26, 2012 at 6:12 pm | #16

    The part I see as really wrong is that he is her teacher and in a position of trust.
    As for running off with an older man I feel that the age limit is rather silly. She is 15 now, but if she was 16 then it is okay? is sex/love whatever down to age? I know some people who are not mature enough at 30 to have a relationship or sex.

    The other thing that makes me smile in all these cases are the photos in the press. It started with a photo of a very mature looking 15 year old, then a slightly less mature one in school uniform and in today’s Telegraph one of her when she was about 12/13. Is this just to make people aware that she is a minor; what next one of her as a baby to build up hatred against the teacher?

    Now if it was my daughter then like Soutie I would track him down and convert his dangly bits into Christmas baubles.

  17. christinaosborne
    September 26, 2012 at 6:17 pm | #17

    1. He was in loco parentis
    2. Married and only a year ago, therefore an adulterer.
    3. Removed a minor from the country without written permission of the parents.
    4. Statutory rape
    5. Previously contributed to the moral delinquency of a minor.

    How many more offences are you willing to overlook?

    Also it strikes me that the girl is at best precocious and at worst a tart, pictured with dyed hair and plastered with slap, hardly the product of a good home!

    I have no objection to the age difference alone. When I was 16 and a half I embarked on a two year affair with a single 32 year old airline pilot! After two years I refused his offer of marriage, left him and went off to University! I rather think in retrospect my parents felt sorry for him. The more uncharitable probably think he had a lucky escape! I found him immature and intellectually unchallenging but I rather liked the sports car he left with me whilst he was flying (Which I drove without a license)

    I do agree that the media hunt is likely to be more damaging than anything else and I feel particularly sorry for the abandoned wife, excessively humiliating for her. I suggest she drags all his possessions into the garden and sets fire to them in public. I would! (Actually I set them alight in the car park but that’s another story!)

    Had they had any sense at all they would have allowed the affair to discretely go along for another year and then, subsequent to his leaving his wife and her leaving that school, set up together and all would have been satisfied legally. Don’t have the sense of a frozen pea between them. I have no time for such stupidity and as such they deserve everything that will be thrown at them.

  18. September 26, 2012 at 7:56 pm | #18

    Ha CO, I am glad that we don’t see eye to eye on everything. I think that I would really enjoy getting drunk with you and arguing the night away, agreeing on some things disagreeing on others, but maintaining a healthy sense of humour throughout.

    I don’t know what it is about me, but I just don’t understand the need to punish people for punishment’s sake. The purpose of punishment must be to stop them from repeating the crime, but if re-offending is not likely to be an issue, then what is the point? I understand the principle of Voltaire’s ‘pour encourager les autre’ but I have never been convinced of the moral rectitude of such a position. Were this man acting deliberately with an ulterior motive such as grooming the girl in order to sell her sexual services, then yes, punishment might well work to dissuade him from repeating. Incarceration would of course prevent him physically from repeating and that I understand. But to punish a person because you are cross with him seems silly.

    You have listed a number of crimes and misdemeanours (to use the Yank expression) that can be summed up in one phrase. The chap screwed up. He is not evil. He did not plan this. Of course I am assuming a great deal here, but when he met and married his wife, one has to believe that he did not know that he would soon meet and fall in love with a girl half his age. When he entered the teaching profession, I can readily believe that he would have had no idea that he might at some point jeopardise his entire career by abusing the trust placed in him as a teacher. Does anybody really believe that if he ‘gets away this time’ he is likely to re-offend?

    What society should seek from this is for the girl to grow up into a happy and well-adjusted woman. Ideally the teacher will revert to a life where he can contribute to society as a maths teacher which is something I suspect Britain needs. What society actually seeks is that the couple gets holed-up in an adobe house in the bad-lands of Mexico with a posse of gun-happy vigilantes rapidly advancing.

  19. September 26, 2012 at 8:41 pm | #19

    Hi Rick, yes, he did wrong. He was in a position of trust, not just as far as the girl was concerned, but the parents, his colleagues, other pupils and society generally. But this was not anticipated. It was not deliberate. I am sure that we have all had infatuations and that we can all agree that infatuations are not renowned for any rational actions associated with them.

    You are right about the press. While I understand that some people can be bought or have low morals, what baffles me is that intelligent, people who profess to be honourable would allow themselves to be associated with newspapers that publish such crap. Boris Johnson for example apparently has aspirations of becoming Prime Minister. How can he continue to write for the DT, a newspaper that has become a lurid rag like all the other tabloids? Really, I do despair about western society. People have become so unpleasant.

    Forgive me a moment of righteous indignation. :)

  20. September 26, 2012 at 9:07 pm | #20

    Ah, yes, Sipu.

    “People have become so unpleasant.”

    I think this is the crux of the matter. I agree with the fact that a teacher is in a position of responsibility, but then the profession as a whole is given no respect whatsoever. There may be good reasons for this, but then neither are the police, politicians, doctors or nurses, they are all subject to the same criticisms, as are parents when they stray.

    So, yes, I agree with much of what you say, we really cannot have it both ways, and I don’t see how punishing the teacher with prison is going to help anyone, including the girl. Press involvement has made this situation much worse than it need be, and that sadly is not going to help resolve this sad situation

  21. September 26, 2012 at 9:34 pm | #21

    Arra, you can join Christine and me in our alcohol-fueled discussions.

  22. September 26, 2012 at 9:38 pm | #22

    It’s not the law, Sipu, it’s bleedin’ obvious why there are non-fraternisation rules between teachers and their pupils. The one is in a position of authority over the other. Positions of authority can be abused. Whether or not that is the case in this particular instance is beside the point – let it go and you open the door for it to happen – quoting this instance as precedent. Similar rules, of course, apply in all institutions where one person is placed in a position of authority over others particularly where minors are concerned.

    Saying, ‘he didn’t mean it,’ patting him on the head and letting him walk away is symptomatic of the decline in moral responsibility evident over the last few decades. If the guy in question lacks the moral fibre to conduct himself in an honourable manner, and the way we expect someone in a position of such responsibility to behave and the character to see what is wrong in his actions, then he deserves everything he gets. In spades.

    Like Soutie, were it my daughter, I would be in France right now…

  23. September 26, 2012 at 9:38 pm | #23

    :) Sipu.

    Just kindly pour me another drink!

  24. September 26, 2012 at 9:49 pm | #24

    Bravo, over the years I have come to like and respect you though I certainly do not always agree with you. This is a case in point. I think your rigidity is not a characteristic to which anyone should aspire. I certainly do not expect the parents to give up on their daughter, but nor do I believe that hunting down the teacher for retribution would serve any purpose. That seems to be a strategy that you Soutie and Rick would all wish to pursue. Your daughters would not love you for it.

  25. September 26, 2012 at 9:52 pm | #25

    Oh Bravo, yes in the world in which you and I grew up, your view is quite right, and even today the majority of teachers are still dedicated responsible professionals, but the school were aware of the problem and did not take any action. Teachers are reviled by pupils, society and parents alike. They are paid peanuts and reviled, but yet they are still expected to behave like angels.

    And this is as usual widely reported by the press, and on blogsites. Of course he is going to lose his job, but it could and indeed should have been handled differently.

    As a mother of two daughters, I appreciate your viewpoint, but things change, and children grow up earlier, as others have said.

  26. September 26, 2012 at 10:49 pm | #26

    Sipu, sorry but I do not feel we should hunt down the teacher for retribution. We do not know the entire story as to why the girl went off with him, if she had an affair then fine, though teachers should know better. My last comments were if it had been my daughter, not because of the affair but that they had run off.

    It appears form the press (if you can believe them) that his marriage wasn’t that great, but what made the girl go off, surely not just “love” there must have been something missing at home.

    If she had a really happy home life then it would just be an affair or infatuation, but if something was amiss then she would be more susceptible to leaving

  27. September 27, 2012 at 12:03 am | #27

    Soutie, Araminta et al – is it then your view that it is OK for one in a position of authority to abuse that authority?

    Is it also your view that someone who does abuse their authority should not be subject to some sanction?

    Is it also your view that because the majority of people in a particular profession are professional enough to adhere to the standards of conduct expected of them it is OK to excuse any who are not?

    Is it also your view that others who might not be so professional and hard-working might not take the view, ‘well, he got a way with it…?’

    I suggest that failure to require that all adhere to the standards expected of them goes a long way to explain the decline in moral standards that is so often remarked upon in these pages.

    On top of any strictly moral argument. He is someone in a position of trust and He. Broke. The. Law.

  28. September 27, 2012 at 12:54 am | #28

    I am highly surprised and greatly saddened by the misguided laissez faire attitude of some Charioteers.

    This guy is an untrustworthy, contract-breaking paedophile who has abducted a minor. Never mind the morality of the matter or the slavering of the journos, this immature plonker has broken the law, as Bravo correctly reminds us.

    The girl cannot be blamed, for whatever she has done to attract the prat, she legally remains a child. Most blokes have had at least one chance encounter with the overblown hormones of a precocious young female, but almost all have had the sense to either ignore the temptation, or to say, “No!”.

    Cut his goolies off. :grin:

  29. September 27, 2012 at 4:18 am | #29

    Bearsy: I will kindly disagree with your assessment. Cut his goolies off and then hang him, draw him, and quarter him!

  30. Soutie
    September 27, 2012 at 6:37 am | #30

    bravo22c :

    Soutie, Araminta et al – is it then your view that it is OK for one in a position of authority to abuse that authority?

    Howzit Bravo, I’ve made my view absolutely clear (see comment #2) You must be confusing me with somebody else :(

  31. September 27, 2012 at 7:36 am | #31

    Sorry Rick if I misunderstood you.

    I find it extremely ironic that all those suggesting a bit of vigilantism or simply extreme punishment are in fact responding to their own intense emotions, the very crime they are accusing Mr Forrest of being guilty. Come to Cape Town and join your like-minded comrades in a spot of necklacing. I am sure you will enjoy yourselves.

    http://www.iol.co.za/news/crime-courts/cape-man-necklaced-in-playground-1.1390286#.UGPzQ00sng8

  32. September 27, 2012 at 7:36 am | #32

    Soutie, senior moment. I did, of course, mean the estimable Sipu

  33. Janus
    September 27, 2012 at 7:50 am | #33

    CO and Bearsy:
    “1. He was in loco parentis
    2. Married and only a year ago, therefore an adulterer.
    3. Removed a minor from the country without written permission of the parents.
    4. Statutory rape
    5. Previously contributed to the moral delinquency of a minor.

    How many more offences are you willing to overlook?”

    Exactly. If my daughter were involved I’d be ready with the pruning hook

  34. christinaosborne
    September 27, 2012 at 7:53 am | #34

    That’s it then folks.
    The majority go for hanging,drawing and quartering!
    When you think about it idiocy and thinking below the waist ought to be a capital crime really

  35. September 27, 2012 at 8:14 am | #35

    Probably my final comment on the subject. I note that the French police are not looking for the couple since the age of consent in France is 15. It really just shows the arbitrariness of man-made laws.

  36. Janus
    September 27, 2012 at 8:23 am | #36

    PS the idea that we should respect the man’s feelings is more than risible. And in the homogenous EU there is a country where minors can roam at will, encouraged by a pervert.

  37. September 27, 2012 at 9:21 am | #37

    Mmm. Behave self-indulgently and irresponsibly. OK. Betray a trust. OK. Apply sanctions for self-indulgent and irresponsible behaviour and betrayal of trust. Not OK.

    Hmmm.

  38. September 27, 2012 at 9:31 am | #38

    PS. Article 227-27 of the French penal code prohibits sexual relations with minors over age 15 (aged 15, 16 or 17) ” 1° where they are committed by a legitimate, natural or adoptive ascendant or by any other person having authority over the victim; 2° where they are committed by a person abusing the authority conferred by his functions.”

    ‘…any other person having authority over them…’

  39. September 27, 2012 at 9:33 am | #39

    Bravo, I credited you with more intelligence. Read what I have written

  40. September 27, 2012 at 10:37 am | #40

    Bearsy.

    Regarding your comment #28.

    In English Law he is not a paedophile as the girl in question has, I presume, reached puberty. He is not guilty of rape, but he is guilty of unlawful sexual intercourse. The two are very different.

    He is most certainly guilty of professional misconduct and he had a duty of care to the girl. He most certainly will lose his job and it is unlikely he will be allowed to teach again, and he may well go to prison.

  41. September 27, 2012 at 11:03 am | #41

    Sorry Araminta, but you are wrong. Not that it matters in the larger scheme of things, but …

    Pre-pubescence is not (to most authorities) a necessary prerequisite – the term paedophilia usually encompasses attraction for both pre- and recently-developed minors. If you want to play with words, the teacher is probably more accurately described as a hebephiliac, but that is a term that is rarely used.

    Legally, intercourse with a minor is defined as statutory rape, although I didn’t describe him as a rapist in my earlier comment, just as a kiddie-fiddler, but using a big word rather than staying with the vernacular.

    I apologise for terminating my comment with my favourite Mel Smith quotation, but that’s just me, I’m afraid. :-)

  42. September 27, 2012 at 11:29 am | #42

    Bearsy.

    There is no precise definition of the term paedophilia in English Law. It is covered by the Sexual Offences Act 2003. The activity is either rape or sexual assault of a child under thirteen years of age:

    http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2003/42/part/1/crossheading/rape-and-other-offences-against-children-under-13

  43. September 27, 2012 at 11:37 am | #43

    Oops, I seem to be having problems with WordPress this morning.

    Similarly “statuary rape” does not exist as such here either. It is seems to be age dependent as well.

    http://www.cps.gov.uk/legal/s_to_u/sexual_offences_unlawful_sexual_intercourse

  44. September 27, 2012 at 12:49 pm | #44

    Well, Araminta, you’re right that statuary rape doesn’t exist, but statutory rape certainly does, in many countries. I will admit that I was mixing up Australian and UK law in the terms I used, but both appear to agree the definition –

    “The term “statutory rape” generally refers to sex between an adult and a sexually mature minor past the age of puberty. Sexual relations with a prepubescent child, generically called “child molestation”, is typically treated as a more serious crime”

    Although I find that there are specific terms for specific acts in your neck of the woods, they all come under the generic (‘blanket’, ‘portmanteau’) term of statutory rape.

    But arguing about nomenclature and jurisdictional niceties is ultimately nugatory. The man’s a waste of oxygen, gets his jollies with females under the age of consent who are half his age and within his care, and deserves no sympathy from anyone.

    Time for bed for Bears.

  45. sheona
    September 27, 2012 at 1:39 pm | #45

    Sipu, it appears that you can stop worrying about “the expense of tracking them down”. The French police are not looking for the couple since the teacher has committed no crime under French law. The British police cannot go wandering round the continent looking for them, so that’s that until the girl decides to contact her parents.

  46. September 27, 2012 at 1:54 pm | #46

    Yes thanks, I saw that Sheona

  47. sheona
    September 27, 2012 at 1:58 pm | #47

    But the newest headline, Sipu, now suggests that the French police will sort of look for the pair, as will the Spanish police when they can spare the time from thumping demonstrators. It’s the European Arrest Warrant that’s sprung into action

  48. Janus
    September 27, 2012 at 3:18 pm | #48

    Sipu :

    Bravo, I credited you with more intelligence. Read what I have written.

    Back to your usual ad hominem stance, I see. Totally unacceptable

  49. September 27, 2012 at 3:53 pm | #49

    sheona, you must have missed my No 38 about Article 227-27 of the French penal code…

  50. sheona
    September 27, 2012 at 5:06 pm | #50

    I read your #38, bravo, but the French police are sticking to “abduction of a minor”.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/crime/9570194/French-confirm-they-will-arrest-runaway-maths-teacher-for-abduction-of-Megan.html

  51. September 27, 2012 at 9:29 pm | #51

    Bother, Bearsy re your #44. I seem to be having a problem with spelling as well!

    I am not aware that he has done this before so perhaps “jollies with females under the age of consent ” is again somewhat inaccurate.

    Strictly speaking, there is an assumption but it only an assumption that this is a sexual relationship between the two.

  52. sheona
    September 27, 2012 at 9:49 pm | #52

    Araminta, this is why the arrest warrant is for “abduction of a minor”, since at the moment there is no proof of a sexual relationship.

  53. September 27, 2012 at 9:51 pm | #53

    Precisely, Sheona.

  54. September 27, 2012 at 10:05 pm | #54

    As indeed there is no proof of statutory rape or paedophilia yet!  (you’re asking for PROOF?  You’re just not keeping up with the times, are you????  What kind of old fashioned fool are you, anyhow?)

  55. September 27, 2012 at 10:51 pm | #55

    christinaosborne :

    That’s it then folks.
    The majority go for hanging,drawing and quartering!

    I have really enjoyed reading all of the contributions by my fellow Charioteers.

    I must admit that I am very much of the hanging, drawing and quartering persuasion myself in this case. Provided, of course, that the teacher has had a fair trial first and that hanging, drawing and quartering are available punishments upon conviction.

    There has to be a trial because he has clearly committed an offence or two. That’s what trials are all about. The law is one thing but sometimes the facts of a case, tested in a proof by trial, allow the possibility that breach of a particular law can be forgiven or, at least, condoned.

    Bring Mr Forrest to trial, not by the media or the blogosphere but in a formal setting. If he persuades a judge and/or jury of his case, let him walk free, hand in hand with his beloved. If not, punish him, not to discourage anybody else, but simply because that’s the way it should be in a civil society.

    Obviously, nobody should make up their mind about the man until all the facts have been adduced in open court. I have to say, however, that I would have to disqualify myself as a member of any prospective jury on one ground alone.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2208850/Megan-Stammers-missing-Married-maths-teacher-Jeremy-Forrest-tattoo-girl-arm.html?ITO=1490

    I try not to ever make my mind up about anything at all without possession of as many facts as possible but, if he has chosen to tattoo himself in the manner alleged and then display it on Twitter, I would find it very difficult to have an open mind about his motives. I could be wrong.

  56. sheona
    September 27, 2012 at 11:00 pm | #56

    As a matter of interest, JM, if the couple managed to stay abroad undetected until the girl reached her sixteenth birthday, would that nullify any of the charges against him?

  57. Janus
    September 28, 2012 at 7:30 am | #57

    Sgeon, I await JM. view, but I don’t think that would be like crossing a state line- yah boo, etc!

  58. Four-eyed English Genius
    September 28, 2012 at 3:57 pm | #58

    We read abut all of this while in Madeira. It does seem to me that the teacher was a bit of a naughty boy, and if anyone had tried this with my daughter when she was fifteen, i think I might have indulged in a few underhand front row tricks on the guy. Even if the law was stupid, which I do not think it is in this case, then presumably, it would be alright if I were to punch a Green politician in the face if he came calling at my door, given how much they are trtying to destroy the world.

    BTW, he has just been nicked and she has been placed into protection in France.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-19756698

One response to “Another (this time English) Scandal about a teacher in love with a student—the essence of Freedom is to be left alone, to be able to go and leave where you aren’t happy and go somewhere else, and, honestly Megan Stammers and Jeremy Forrest were NOT threats to public safety or security—they just wanted to be happy….

  1. Pingback: Modern Law attacks Love: Megan Stammers and Jeremy Forrest should have been left alone! | TIERRA LIMPIA by Charles Lincoln

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