The creator of the site Revenge says it would be “good” if his ex-wife committed suicide

VANCOUVER – British Columbia Crown’s Decision Not to Charge Man Who Created Revenge Website to Destroy His Ex-Wife’s Reputation Reveals the Limits of Criminal Harassment Law in the Digital Age , according to experts.

The Crown said it could not conclude that the woman had “objective reason to fear for her safety”. The website includes private photos, her address and phone number, and describes her as a white supremacist, child molester, and drug addict.

“I think it’s worth having a conversation as a society about whether or not ‘objective fear for your safety’ is in fact the right threshold, as more and more harassment takes place in the world. online, “said David Fraser, an Internet and privacy lawyer.

“I’m not suggesting dropping it so low that you only have to hurt someone’s feelings, but maybe that line is a little too high to deal with significant cases of intentional harassment.”

The case involving a man from British Columbia and a woman from Arizona has drawn criticism from Canadian law enforcement. While experts said the high threshold set by the criminal harassment law plays a role, they also urged the crown and the police to reconsider the case.

Patrick Fox, whose birth name is Richard Riess, said in an interview that he created the site about his ex-wife Desiree Capuano to cause “as much damage as possible to his reputation and his life”, but that ‘he would never hurt her physically.

He said he would only shut down the site if she hit a low point in her life that he was satisfied with or died. He said it “would be great” if she committed suicide, but that is not a goal of the site.

“I just don’t believe she really brings anything positive or good to the world, and I don’t think the world will be any worse when she ceases to exist.”

The couple separated in 2001, when their son was a baby. Capuano alleged that Fox hid the child from her for years, while Fox said she abandoned the boy. He was later found guilty of perjury and deported from the United States in 2013, but he accuses Capuano of calling the authorities.

Capuano now has custody of their son and lives near Tucson, Arizona. She said she lived in constant stress and fear and struggled to find work after being fired months ago. At one point, he sent his colleagues links to the website, she said.

Fox also sent him hundreds of threatening emails, some including photos of his firearms license and a place he said he could cross the border, she said.

“I don’t understand how, just because he’s not physically in front of me with a gun, it’s not considered harassment,” she said in tears. “Just because he doesn’t physically hit me doesn’t mean it’s not abuse.”

She has vehemently denied Fox’s claims that she is a child molester, white supremacist, or drug addict. She said she did not sue for libel because she could not pay the court costs.

Isabel Grant, a law professor at the University of British Columbia and an expert on stalking, said courts have said reasonable fear for her safety also includes psychological safety.

She noted that a recent Twitter harassment trial in Ontario resulted in an acquittal because the judge could not find the two complainants’ fear was reasonable. She said the BC case seems more egregious and could fall under the criminal harassment law.

“When this provision was drafted in the early 1990s, people weren’t thinking about cyber abuse. They were thinking about men who physically follow and threaten their former partners.”

Dan McLaughlin, spokesperson for the British Columbia Criminal Justice Division, said the RCMP arrested, questioned and released Fox in July 2015. Investigators then recommended charges, but they were not approved.

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