Campaign launched on sex ruling

Sado-masochists have launched a campaign to overturn the ruling by Lord Lane that consenting adults cannot assault one another.

For sado-masochists the issue is consent. After the ruling in February, everything from love bites to sado-masochism is now illegal.

Kellan Farshea hopes the campaign will persuade the Law Lords to overturn this ruling in December. 'We want the right to choose what we do with our bodies. I will not be pitied, I will not be shamed, I am an out and proud sado-masochistic,' he said.

Lord Lane's ruling followed an appeal by 16 men who were convicted in December 1990 for participating in consensual sexual sado-masochistic acts.

All admitted aiding and abetting assault and received prison sentences of up to four years, in some cases suspended.

Liberty, the pressure group, supports the campaign. 'It is a matter of basic human rights. These men were sent to prison for activities they consented to,' Andrew Puddephatt, the general secretary, said.