The Naked Rambler has lost his appeal against his conviction under section 5 of the Public Order Act (behavior likely to cause ‘harassment, alarm or distress).
Notwithstanding the appellant’s article 10 right to freedom of expression a conviction under section 5 Public Order Act 1986 was proportionate when the appellant chose to walk through a town centre naked. Neither the facts that, on occasion, the police have helped the appellant, while naked, to leave urban areas (doubtless in order to avoid confrontation and potential disorder) and that they have on occasion declined to arrest or prosecute nor the reality that some people have not adversely reacted to his nudity or are not affected by it are not to the point. To say that the adverse reaction to the appellant’s nudity is not his problem or the result of his behaviour (which is how the Appellant articulated it) is to ignore reality.
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