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Rape is a very nasty and very serious matter. Which is why I have always believed that to make false accusations of this crime should be treated most seriously, in the UK a Judge thought so too.
Diane Berriman, 31, accused innocent landlord Paul Cook, 54, of raping her in his pub last February – having previously claimed Cook had raped her in 2004.
She had also cried rape against another man named Trevor Hirst in the same year – so when the new allegations emerged suspicious police officers arrested her, and she confessed she had invented the attacks.
Sentencing Berriman at York Crown Court on September 21, Judge Paul Hoffman said: “The wider implication is that true victims of sexual crime are treated with suspicion and justice is not achieved.
“These offences are so serious only an immediate sentence of custody can be justified.”
Sadly for many victims of rape the it often boils down to a case of he said she said on the matter of consent, with generally no other evidence. This also means that should someone wish to make a false claim it is relatively easy to do so. Eight months seems like a fairly light sentence though, because to my mind bearing false witness is right up there with Rape itself and should actually carry an equally harsh penalty.