‘Dr Evil’ tottooist jailed

In 1993 the Appellate Committee of the House of Lords, as the precursor to the UK Supreme Court, determined, in a case relating to otherwise consensual sado-masochistic activities, that an individual could not consent to assault occasioning actual bodily harm or wounding contrary to the Offences Against the Person Act 1861 (See R. v. Brown [1994] 1 AC 212).

Birmingham Crown Court recently considered analogous issues in a case arising out of the activities of a ‘tattoo artist’ operating under the nom de plume of‘Dr Evil’.

The Defendant, Brendan 'Dr Evil' McCarthy (50), had carried on his business from premises in Wolverhampton for many years.  As things diversified, his activities expanded to: ‘tongue-splitting’; ear and nipple removal with the express ‘consent’ of his customers.

Mr McCarthy did, however, eventually plead guilty to three counts of causing grievous bodily harm (GBH) with intent.  

His Honour Judge Nawaz presiding noted that the Defendant had 'no qualifications to carry out surgical procedures, nor to deal with any adverse consequences which could have arisen', before imposing a ‘deterrent sentence’ of forty months (3 years, 4 months) imprisonment.

This case may seem a tad bizarre, but the takeaway is to make sure your get the right legal advice before embarking on any business venture.

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R. v. McCarthy (Unreported, 21 March 2019)

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