Photographer found guilty of voyeurism

Scales of Justice
Scales of Justice

A professional photographer has been convicted by a jury of taking a secret video recording of a woman without her consent and for his own sexual gratification.

Following a two-day trial held at Newry Crown Court, sitting in Belfast, a jury of six men and six women found the 62-year old guilty on a single charge of voyeurism.

The photographer, who has an address in Co Tyrone and who cannot be identified due to a reporting restriction, will be sentenced at a later date.

During the trial, the jury was shown a 30-minute recording which was taken at the woman’s Co Armagh home on February 27, 2014 where she agreed to pose for a number of pictures.

Some of the images were ‘glamour’ shots that exposed her cleavage and parts of her breasts.

A year after posing for the images, she was informed by the police that the photographer in question - who she considered a close personal friend - had a video recording some of the photoshoot.

It was the Crown’s case that the accused secretly recorded the woman on a second camera for the purposes of sexual gratification. The footage shows the woman posing in a number of different tops, and also shows that each time she changes her top, the photographer leaves the room.

When she gave her evidence at the trial, the mum-of-one said that while she was not put under any pressure to expose any of her breasts, she felt uncomfortable with what was happening. She also revealed that when the photographer called to show her images from her shoot, she didn’t like the pictures and ripped most of them up.

The woman said she had “no idea” the photoshoot was being recorded on a second camera, telling the jury: “The only thing he had in his hand was the big professional camera. As far as I was concerned, it was just still shots.”

When he was cross-examined, the photographer denied deliberately recording his friend during the photoshoot. When asked if he derived any sexual gratification, the defendant said he felt no difference between photographing her and photographing an anthill.

The jury found him guilty of voyeurism. He was released pending sentence, but warned by Judge David McFarland not to take this as an indication of the sentence he faces.