Darren Moore: Police fears of protest at funeral procession of convicted rapist quashed

By Ben Jones, Rowan Davies

It was a gloomy afternoon in central Cardiff as the funeral procession for Darren Moore, 39 – also known as Crystal Coutoure – made its way through the centre of the city. Moore, originally from Newport, had been performing at popular LGBT venue Pulse on Churchill Way on January 22nd. Hours later, his body was discovered a short distance away in an alleyway in the early hours of the following morning.

On January 24th, a 50-year-old man was arrested by South Wales Police on ‘suspicion of manslaughter’ but was shortly released on bail. According to the South Wales Police Commissioner’s office in a statement made to The DiffDaff – ‘enquiries are ongoing’ and that ‘there have been no further press releases.’ 

Earlier yesterday morning, news broke that certain roads in central Cardiff would be closed the next day for an expansive funeral procession. Mill Lane, Canal Street and Hayes Bridge Road in Cardiff City Centre were all to be shut down between 11:15am and 1:15pm. Speculation was rife: who was this person that could have afforded this? How were they able to shut down three different roads in one of the busiest areas of the city?

Comments on WalesOnline’s social media page were divided, and seemed to suggest much more to the news. One read: “This is insane. I get that people loved him, maybe not knowing his real past, but imagine his victims, seeing so much love for someone who was so vile to them, and closing off a city to celebrate his life… madness!” Another read: “Perhaps people should consider the feelings of the family who have lost someone before posting nasty comments…”

Despite a heightened police presence and rumours of unrest on social media, the procession was entirely undisturbed. Supporters, co-workers, and family members could be spotted watching on – including David Ingles, who had worked with the victim’s husband for some time: “Obviously I can understand people’s frustrations, but I just think that today people should just respect what the day is, and leave it there.”

A fundraiser by Moore’s family for his funeral was set up in January and as of March 2023 has raised over £7,800. Darren’s death has been a major point of contention for many in Wales: in 1999, Moore was convicted of four counts of rape of a boy under 16 and was jailed. Upon release, he was barred from working with children entirely. He later found work as a gymnastics instructor in Cardiff with children, breaching his initial court order, which landed him in trouble with the law again. Eventually, Darren became drag queen Crystal Coutoure – a popular, divisive figure in the world of drag.

The SWP investigation into Darren’s death continues.

Categories: Cardiff

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