Worth their while?: Pursuing a rape complaint through the criminal justice system

  • L Vetten
  • R Jewkes
  • R Sigsworth
  • N Christofides
  • L Loots
  • O Dunseith


If the criminal justice system were to advertise itself to victims of sexual violence, would its tag line be L'Oreal's 'Because you're worth it'? Or would the Foundry Premium Cider comment on the building of a pyramid: 'Twelve years in the making and it still doesn't taste very good' be more apposite? Certainly, a lack of faith in, or fear of, legal processes, is one of the reasons why eight out of nine women who are raped do not report the matter to the police.1 This article explores the extent to which victims' lack of faith in legal processes is warranted and asks if laying a complaint is worth the effort.

Journal Identifiers

print ISSN: 1991-3877