A British marine told a court that he had suffered Post Traumatic Stress Disorder after he was forced to watch gay porn and masturbate in front of others during a strange hazing ritual after he failed a map reading test.
Corporal Danny Foster, 30, and corporal Philip Beer, 34, are on trial at Portsmouth Military Court for their ill-treatment of a subordinate.
According to testimony from the marine, whose identity is not being released, when he refused to participate in the ritual, he was told: “you fu*king are.”
In another alleged incident, the Commando was forced to shave all the hair of his body in what’s known as “family time,” a punishment given to marines who do not clean up coffee stains, the court was told.
The marine said: “You could be punished for anything starting from just leaving a pen lid on the floor up to operational things like not turning on your radio while on patrol.”
“A senior marine would stand at the front and would ask if there were any integrity shouts – which meant you would own up to a mistake you had made.”
“Then there would be stitch-ups, and marines or corporals could stitch each other up and report something someone else had done.”
“On the first occasion, there had been a map reading test which was made too hard and so a number of people failed.”
“We got lined up at the front of the room during family time and the corporals, who were at the back, were talking about what they would make us do. They all laughed when Corporal Foster said we should wank to gay porn.”
“When family time ended everyone made their way to where we slept – on the way I told Foster I wasn’t going to do it but he said to me ‘you fucking are’. ”
“The porn was military-themed porn, the men had berets on and people were watching us – we were told the last person to ejaculate would get another punishment. I felt disgusted and degraded having to do it, it was massively degrading, I had no power against it; I could not say no.”
The marine explained that punishments were decided by rolling two dice, with the numbers relating to punishments on a sheet of paper.
Sometimes marines were forced to play a game called “Deal or No Deal” played as part of punishments.
He told the court: “There was a PowerPoint presentation and the forfeits would be projected onto the wall and others would be holding bits of paper with numbers on. On one occasion, I had two boxes (choices) left and we would usually get a swap offered by whoever was the banker. Foster knew I had [a punishment called] Django and would not let me swap because he knew I hated it.”
“I had to take the punishment – there was a metal pull-up bar in the gym which you would hang from and be whipped. Corporal Foster was not there when I was whipped, I had to have another marine do it and be my witness. There were different things used to whip you – on this occasion, I was whipped with a rubber exercise band and then left hanging there afterward.”
During cross-examination by Gareth Evans, who represents Foster, the marine said his time with 43 Commando had led to him developing post traumatic stress disorder. When asked by Mr Evans whether he had problems with his memory, the marine said: “I have PTSD due to what happened. That does affect my memory and I try to put what went on out of my mind, but I do remember what happened.”
Foster denies three counts of ill treatment of a subordinate.