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Law Upskirting banned in sex crime reforms


Unswerving cyclist
14 Mar 2002
Japanese lawmakers will introduce the country's first laws against taking sexually exploitative photos or videos of others without consent. The new bill against "photo voyeurism" would prohibit acts such as upskirting and secretly filming sexual acts. Until now, such criminal cases had to be prosecuted under local prefecture laws, which greatly vary in scope.

In 2021, Japanese police made over 5,000 arrests for clandestine photography - a record number and about three times the cases in 2010.

Most cell phone manufacturers in Japan have already installed audible shutter sounds on their mobile devices to prevent secret filming.

The bill is part of a wider overhaul of Japan's laws on sex crimes, which will also expand the definition of rape. It explicitly prohibits the taking, distribution and or possession of photographs of someone's genitals without their consent. It also criminalises the act of taking photographs of people being manipulated without their knowledge into sexual positions. Specifically, the bill bans the filming of children "in a sexual manner without justifiable reason". In Japan, child models - mostly girls - are routinely portrayed in sexually provocative ways. For instance, some have been asked to pose in lingerie or swimsuits. Offenders would face imprisonment of up to three years or a fine of up to 3 million Japanese yen (£17,500; $22,000). The reforms are expected to be passed in June this year. It comes after growing public outcry for stronger laws criminalising acts facilitated by mobile phone photography.

Surprised there wasn't already a law against it. I remember a professor at my university got caught (I think for a second time) looking up skirts on escalators with a mirror. I figured if that would get someone in trouble, taking photos would be even worse...
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