Olivia Colman: The Crown star urges Patel to ‘outlaw revenge porn threats’ | Celebrity News | Showbiz & TV

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The Oscar-winner is backing domestic abuse charity Refuge in its fight to have “intent to share intimate images” added to the Domestic Abuse Bill. The amendment is currently being considered by the House of Lords. Olivia recorded a video ­message to make a direct appeal to Ms Patel. In it the 47-year-old actress said: “Dear Priti, I need your help.

“Unless you act now millions of women across the UK will be threatened.

“Right now, women in this country are being abused by partners threatening to share explicit images of them.

“Please change the law. Make threatening to share explicit imagery illegal, now.

“And protect women from the naked threat.”

Olivia’s plea comes as this newspaper’s End This Injustice campaign has already won a Government pledge to overhaul the family court system. 

Refuge has been lobbying Secretary of State for Justice Robert Buckland with its Naked Threat campaign.

Thousands have called the revenge porn helpline over the past three years.

And ­campaigners including Olivia are demanding urgent action. Made In Chelsea star Zara McDermott has also added her voice to the call for the offence to form part of the Bill.

She said: “The threat is real, it’s happening right now.

“And it’s already affected the lives of millions upon millions of women. This threat ruins lives.” Baroness Nicky Morgan, the former Conservative ­minister, put ­forward the amendment in the Domestic Abuse Bill.

She said: “Now is the time for action. There is a landmark ­opportunity to change this with the Domestic Abuse Bill.

“I put forward an ­amendment to do just that. If the amendment is agreed millions of women will be ­protected.

“More than 35,000 ­people have written to the Government asking for help.”

Campaigner Natasha Saunders suffered eight years of domestic abuse and threats from her ex-­partner who said he would post intimate images of her online.

The 32-year-old from Shropshire said: “This is urgent. Calls to the revenge porn helpline about the issue have tripled in three years.”

Safeguarding minister Victoria Atkins said: “We are listening carefully to victims of revenge porn and threats to use it against them.

“Their experiences are terrible. We are also asking members of the public and victims for their views on all crimes that disproportionately affect women and girls, including domestic abuse, sexual violence and online abuse, to help shape the new national strategy on violence against women and girls and end these dreadful crimes, and we encourage everyone to give their views.

“Our Domestic Abuse Bill is a game-changing piece of legislation that will help millions of people. We know that perpetrators use many different ways to abuse. We have drafted the Bill and guidance to reflect this so that different forms of abuse are identified.”

The Ministry of Justice is working with police to ensure they use existing laws to tackle threats of revenge porn.

A spokesman said: “We have immense sympathy with victims of revenge porn which is why we outlawed this cruel behaviour – leading to more than 900 abusers being ­convicted and more than 190 being sent straight to prison since 2015.

“Those who threaten to share such images can already be prosecuted under the ­existing offences.

“But we have asked the Law Commission to make sure our laws are keeping pace with these evolving crimes.”

The Law Commission review is due to report back about any gaps in legislation this summer.





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