'My son, the victim'

Langham's dad speaks out

Chris Langham’s father has mounted a robust defence of his son, claiming his jail sentence for downloading sickening child pornography was a ‘jack-booted misuse of power’.

In a newspaper article today, Michael Langham even suggests that viewing such images should not be a crime – and links the law on child porn to ‘the beginnings of a police state’.

‘To make downloading a criminal act in itself is an abuse of our God-given right to be curious,’ he wrote, adding that the law is as ‘repressively short-sighted’ as the theatre censor that was finally abolished in 1968.

The Thick Of It star was released from prison last week after an appeal reduced his ten-month sentence to six for downloading 15 images and videos, which police rated as the worst category of child abuse.

But his father blames the media and police for ‘demonising’ his son and creating a ‘lynch-mob mentality’, and said prosecutors were ‘infected with witch-hunting fervour’.

Michael Langham said his son is no criminal, but ‘an artist, both gifted and burdened with an unbridled curiosity to understand fully and often painfully everything we experience as members of the human race’.

However at the time of Langham’s sentencing, the NSPCC’s Diana Sutton said: “There is no excuse for downloading images of children being raped. Chris Langham has committed a serious offence which contributed to the suffering and degradation of those children. Anyone viewing these images serves to fuel demand so more children get abused in the real world.’

Michael Langham also accused his son’s friends in comedy for abandoning him, but singled out Armando Iannucci, John Cleese and Mel Smith for their support.

Click here to read his full article in the Independent on Sunday.

It has also been reported today that Langham has been receiving death threats at his home since his release last week.

Published: 18 Nov 2007

We see you are using AdBlocker software. Chortle relies on advertisers to fund this website so it’s free for you, so we would ask that you disable it for this site. Our ads are non-intrusive and relevant. Help keep Chortle viable.