I was not bullied, says marine
A ROYAL Marine who was filmed being kicked in the face during a naked fist fight has insisted he was not the victim of bullying.
Ray Simmons, 23, of Letchworth, Hertfordshire, said the man who was seen in the video kicking him in the head was "a good mate".
Mr Simmons told the Daily Mirror that the initiation ceremony at 42 Commando's base in Bickleigh Barracks, near Plymouth, in May was a game that went too far and he put it down to "Marine humour".
He said: "It's been claimed I was the victim of ritual abuse, but that's untrue. Nobody forced me to do anything. The idea was to go naked and make a prat of yourself. It was just a game that went too far."
The Ministry of Defence launched an investigation into claims of violent bullying rituals within the Royal Marines after stills from the secretly-shot video were published in the News of the World.
The images showed Mr Simmons taking part in a naked fist fight before being kicked in the head while around 40 other marines looked on. Colonel Bob Stewart, a former commander of British forces, said the images had shocked him to the core. But Mr Simmons denied he was a victim of bullying and said the man who had kicked him regretted what had happened.
He told the newspaper that the incident had occurred at a new joiners' party held for ten recruits.
Mr Simmons said that during a wrestling "bout" something was said to an NCO and "he went out of control and kicked me in the head". He said the NCO who had kicked him was "heartbroken" by what he had done.
Mr Simmons added that the incident had been blown up out of all proportion.
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