Sunday, September 11, 2011

Cybersex punishable under child
porno, foto video voyeur laws
Rey Anthony Chiu

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol Sept 10 (PIA) –If you think you can escape punishment for cybersex because no such law has been crafted, think again.

In the absence of specific laws against cybersex, police authorities cite two existing and applicable laws in the country that can still be used in the pursuit of this criminal activity.

During the recent Kapihan sa PIA, SPO4 Rosemarie Avenido said that since it is the state’s task to preserve the dignity and privacy of persons while guaranteeing full human rights, it has criminalized cybersex.

Speaking at the recent Kapihan sa PIA, SPO4 Avenido named the anti-Child Pornography Act of 2009 Photo and Video Voyeurism Act of 2009 as applicable laws.

Wikipedia defines cybersex as a virtual sex encounter where two or more persons connected remotely through a computer network send each other sexually explicit messages describing a sexual experiences in a form of sexual role-play as they describe actions through instant messaging of audio chat, all to stimulate sexual feelings or fantasies.

While text-based cybersex has been on for years, the webcams’ popularity has enhanced the practice of online partners or groups using two-way video connections to openly expose themselves.

In Bohol, both SPO4 Avenido Camp Dagohoy children and women desks supervisor PInspector Tomasita Cariño agree that there are cybersex sessions going on in internet-cafes and other private locations, but they refused to name them.

Cybersex dens operate by charging viewing customers at outrageous rates, Inspector Carino said.

According to sources, an hour-long session can be charged thousands of pesos, and that is true to children, teens or adults who expose and prostitute their bodies in front of a computer.

While parents have reportedly said cybersex is not prostitution because nobody touches their bodies, police authorities press that cybersex is also prostitution.
 
But a law here has criminalized photo and video voyeurism as well as child pornography, police sources said.

Republic Act 9775 has banned the hiring, persuading, coercing or inducing a child to perform in the production or creation of any form of child pornography. It also band anyone from transmitting, broadcasting, reproducing among others, any for of child pornography.

In fact, conspiracy to commit child pornography makes it syndicated and raises the penalties to life imprisonment and P2 million to 5 million fines, Avenido said.

On the other hand, photo and video voyeurism has banned the taking of videos or pictures of persons in any form of sexual act or capture the image of any private parts without express permission. The law also bans reproduction or distribution of these materials regardless of it taken with permission.

Avenido revealed that in the country, children are lured into cybersex operations to cater to wealthy pedophiles who pay sums just to view videos or photos of nude children.

Be aware where your children hang out and keep tabs on their internet habits, both Inspector Carino and SPO4 Avenido urged. (30)


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PNP issues protocols for
Info-sharing to media

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol Sept 10 (PIA) -- Media men can expect police officers to politely answer phone inquiries for crime reports.

In fact, they can ask police officers for police blotter information, but the level of information is limited to matters that do not interfere with ongoing operations.

Police Senior Inspector Homobono Sayon told this to Bohol police commanders during the recent command conference on PIPS assessment and Media Relations Seminar Workshop held at Camp Dagohoy Wednesday.

Inspector Sayon, Camp Dagohoy Deputy for Operations said the Media relations Seminar Workshop was also aimed at cultivating police officers’ attitude of information sharing while cascading the Philippine National Police (PNP) policies on sharing information to media especially in crisis situations.

It may be recalled that the PNP also issued specific protocols after a bungled rescue attempt for a hostage taking in front of the Quirino Grandstand last year went haywire, with media allegedly owning part of the blame.

The incident has also pushed the PNP to come up with specific protocols and organizational changes to correct the deficiency in the process of releasing police information for public consumption.

Inspector Sayon, in his topic on the Roles and Responsibilities of the police spokesperson as public information officer, explained that while the media has the task of informing the public about criminal incidents, the police also share the responsibility of protecting the rights of the accused in the principle of public accountability.

He said the seminar was a re-echo of a three day seminar PNP Seminar workshops that attempts to reveal to the police the dynamics of the media in the country to let them understand a sector which the police has a natural aversion.    

According to him, the police are also expected to adhere to the law on protecting minors, crime victim’s names or information not materially related to the particular news report sought which might harm some ones reputation.

In Bohol, it has been a common practice for media men to directly phone police stations and ask desk officers for blotter entries and other developments.

While some Bohol police stations have appointed spokespersons, there are still several police officers who are intimidated by media, admits several stations commanders.

This media relations workshop is a step in the right direction for it helps in cultivating confidence between the police and the media, Deputy Provincial Director Julius Cesar Gornez pressed. (30)

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