- By James Hassan
Several doctors from the UK are facing criminal charges for carrying out consensual but illegal cosmetic genital surgery in the capital
The women who has “Designer Vagina” cosmetic procedures were all consenting adults who had paid for the surgery in the belief that it would make them more attractive to the opposite sex.
Scotland Yard however are now carrying out a criminal investigation after being alerted to the cases and deciding that several doctors’ actions involved a potential breach of legislation which outlaws female genital surgery, describing it instead as mutilation.
Files on two surgeons from London have now formally been submitted to the Crown Prosecution Service for charging decisions. A file has also been sent to prosecutors on a third doctor from Cheshire.
Last year saw the first prosecution under the new laws against female genital cosmetic surgery, the case did not result in a conviction.
The CPS are publicly hoping that this will see the first convictions, cementing their controversial decision to outlaw the practice.
The police investigators have also commented that they are trying to use these new cases to spark public and legislative debate about cosmetic genital surgery in general.
Female genital cosmetic surgery often includes labia reduction or vaginal tightening. The current new legislation outlaws most but not all such surgeries under the umbrella crime of Female Genital Mutilation. The new laws sparked legal debate as to whether or not the UK will also outlaw male surgeries such as circumcision.
Musician and pro choice for genital cosmetics figure, Sinitta, publically revealed her plans to have “Vaginoplasty” surgery in an online video broadcast.
The singer, 53, has already published footage of a friend having a “designer vagina” operation online via the site, Periscope.
Such procedures, which critics say are wrongfully promoted as enhancing sexual pleasures and attractiveness, are carried out widely at clinics in London’s infamous Harley Street as well as nation and world wide.
The Home Office however two years ago warned that the operations may be illegal unless there was a medical or psychological reason for them.
The Home Office interference, which does not outlaw medical procedures such as facial tattooing, horn implants, tongue forking and other facial scaring or transformative surgeries, has prompted renewed attention and focus on the issue from police and the CPS. This new attention has directly resulted in the criminal investigation of the three doctors in a move many see as political rather than just.
The police have told the press that in their opinion the evidence against the doctors is great enough to secure charges and a conviction, stating that they are confident the CPS will press full criminal charges against all three doctors.
The CPS are now deciding whether or not it is in the public interest to spend the large amounts of tax money on there prosecutions.
The most common form of cosmetic genital surgery in the UK is labial reduction, the removal of excess tissue from the entrance to the vagina. Many patients cite appearance and hygiene as the reasons they wish to undertake this procedure. However the UK government insists that there is little evidence that this type of procedure can medically improve the quality of life for patients. Instead the government claims that the risk of surgical infection or loss of sensitivity legally counts as Female Genital Mutilation with surgeons possibly facing lengthy custodial sentences.
It was clarified by the British Society for Paediatric and Adolescent Gynaecology who looked into studies of girls under the age of 18 who had requested such procedures that the practice of increasing the size of the “G-Spot” and tightening the vagina for women who naturally lacked sexual sensitivity was not to be counted as a medical reason or justification for the operations and that they too should be considered mutilation.
Although outlawed by the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003, it was now PM Theresa May, then Home Secretary, in 2014 who revitalised the “War on FGM”.
In a report she submitted to parliament May added:
“The 2003 Act does not contain any exemption for cosmetic surgery. If a procedure … is unnecessary for physical or mental health … then it is an offence … It would be for a court to decide if cosmetic surgery constitutes mutilation and is therefore illegal.”
The Crown Prosecution Services has confirmed that it is assessing three files on UK surgeons on suspicion of FGM offences. Whilst wishing to make the cases public at the same time both the CPS and the Metropolitan Police declined to comment further.
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