Serial Stalker Jailed for Three and a half years.
28th April 2015
Today persistent stalker Elliot Fogel was jailed for three and a half years for a breach of a lifetime restraining order preventing him from making any contact with Claire Waxman. This is the fourth time Fogel has been prosecuted for a breach of this restraining order. He has previously received a suspended sentence, 16 week and two years custodial sentence for past breaches.
Ms Waxman won a landmark case against the CPS for not previously prosecuting Fogel in 2011 for a breach of the restraining order.”Stalkers wreck their victims lives. My family and I have had to endure 12 years of persistent stalking and we just wish that Fogel would desist so that we can lead a normal life" .
Using the court system is a common tactic by stalkers. They take out vexatious court actions in order to force their victims into contact with them. Fogel used this tactic in 2006 and 2011, when he brought county court actions against Waxman. In 2011, following one of his vexatious complaints, Fogel was charged for a breach of the restraining order but the CPS dropped the prosecution claiming he had a legal right to access the civil courts.
Waxman took legal action against the CPS for failing to prosecute Fogel’s breach as she believed this was a breach of her human rights. In February 2012, her application at The Royal Courts of Justice was upheld and she won her case against the CPS. It was a landmark victory which showed the value of the Human Rights Act in protecting Victims of crime and has ensured that all victims of stalking will be allowed to access justice in these types of cases. (see summary of ruling: http://tinyurl.com/ommn44b)
“This verdict will give Claire and her family some reprieve but Fogel is a determined stalker who will continue. It is paramount that any further breaches are dealt with quickly and that there are strong safeguarding measures to protect Claire’s safety” said Harry Fletcher, Criminal Justice Director, Digital-Trust.
This case has highlighted the need for psychiatric treatment for persistent stalkers and Frank Farnham, Consultant Forensic Psychiatrist and clinical lead for Fixated Threat Assessment Centre and the National Stalking Clinic said “psychiatric treatment of stalkers would benefit them and their victims. We need the courts to recommend the specialist treatment that we provide at the National Stalking Clinic”.
The Digital-Trust is currently campaigning for a Courts Co-operation, Enforcement and Family Courts Amendment Bill. This new Bill would include:
- If a person found guilty of 2 or more breaches of a restraining order against the same or multiple victims, there shall be a presumption of a custodial sentence unless there is a reasonable excuse.
- There shall be a duty on the Crown Prosecution Service to ensure that all breaches of restraining orders in respect of the same victim are the subject of criminal proceedings unless it would be unreasonable to do so.