If one pulls down one's trousers and underwear to expose one's buttocks but without intention to expose any part of one's genitals, for the purpose of conveying one's disapproval and irreverence to another, (also called "mooning"), do they commit an offence in any part of the UK?

UK specified, all other jurisdictions, esp. USA welcome.


2 Answers 2


In English law there isn't a specific offence of "mooning".


It is conceivable that under Public Order legislation someone mooning could be found guilty of causing "harassment, alarm or distress". There was a man arrested for mooning a speed camera, charged with a public order offence and subsequently acquitted.

In 2010 a Kent man was issued with an anti-social behaviour order (ASBO) that banned him from mooning (among other things). ASBOs were civil orders, breach of which was a criminal offence. Had that man continued to moon, he could have been found guilty of the criminal offence of breaching the order.

(ASBOs have since been replaced with a system of civil injunctions and civil behaviour orders.)

It is conceivable that repeatedly mooning one or more particular people would be deemed harrassment. I am not aware of criminal cases but there was an employment tribunal case that found the person had committed sexual harrassment in the workplace because they had mooned a colleague.

At common law it is an offence to outrage public decency, "an act which is lewd, obscene or of disgusting character, which outrages minimum standards of public decency as assessed by the jury." I doubt whether a brief moon would amount to that; worse behaviour might.



While not a specific crime, the action may be considered offensive behaviour under s4A, the Public Order Act 1986.

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