A woman who was raped by a British soldier has demanded that he is sacked from the Army and warned that his continued service will sully the reputation of the Armed Forces.
Sean Diamond, who is serving in The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, was cleared of rape by a jury in 2017, but his victim successfully sued him in the civil courts in a landmark case a year later.
He has been ordered to pay the woman £119,250 in damages after a sheriff ruled that he had raped her in a Dundee flat in 2015.
It is understood that the Ministry of Defence’s lawyers are considering the implications of the ruling, only the second of its kind in Scottish legal history, and that Diamond could yet face the full range of sanctions up to, and including, dismissal.
However, in a public response branded “wholly inadequate” by campaigners, the Army refused to confirm that action will be taken against Diamond, who it is understood was recently deployed to Mali as part of a UN peacekeeping operation.
His victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons but was referred to in court documents as Ms AB, said that she was “horrified” at the prospect of her attacker continuing his career, claiming he poses a continued risk to vulnerable women.
Letting soldier carry on with his life ‘unacceptable’
Speaking to The Telegraph, she accused the Army of acting irresponsibly and insensitively by deploying him to western Africa after she moved to Morocco, in part to move on from her ordeal.
“They have sent him to a place where he’s literally surrounded by vulnerable people he can prey on and attack, and no one is ever going to stand up to him,” the woman said.
“They refer to them as the Queen’s soldiers. The Queen stripped her own son of all his military titles in a day, when it was confirmed he had to go to a trial. So for this little squaddie to be allowed to just carry on with his life would be completely unacceptable.”
In a ruling released this week, a sheriff ruled that he was “satisfied on the balance of probabilities” that Diamond, now 28, had raped Ms AB.
A jury delivered a not proven verdict when the case went to trial in 2017.
Ms AB, 30, claimed that Diamond’s continued service would undermine efforts to attract more women into the military and harm the reputation of British servicemen and women, the vast majority of whom she described as “heroes”.
She added: “What woman is going to want to join the military knowing that is what they have behind the barracks?”
Soldier’s future thrown into doubt
Diamond met the woman on a night out in Dundee in 2015 while he was based at Leuchars. They went back to her friend’s house, who she was staying with. She fell asleep on a sofa and woke up to find him raping her.
Diamond admitted they had sex, but insisted it was consensual. A sheriff believed Ms AB, ruling there was no evidence she expressed consent in “any way”.
The not proven verdict left him free to continue his military career, which has now been thrown into doubt by the civil ruling.
Army: Judgment ‘subject to further review’
An Army spokesman said that the judgment “will be subject to further review by the chain of command to determine what action, if any, is appropriate”.
He added: “Soldiers and officers at all levels of the British Army are held to the highest standards. If individuals fail to meet these standards, then appropriate action is taken.”
Sandy Brindley, the chief executive of Rape Crisis Scotland, said that the Army’s response “does nothing but confirm the fears of many survivors that even after lengthy, difficult fights for justice, where men are found to have perpetrated rape, they will face little to no consequences”.
She added: “Nobody would expect detailed explanations of individual HR processes, but it is reasonable for the Army to confirm – in the interest of public safety, let alone justice – that somebody found to have committed rape is no longer serving in their forces.”