Author Topic: * Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests *  (Read 24293 times)

Offline PhilScraton

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* Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests *
« on: March 10, 2014, 05:32:41 PM »
Today's statement, following on from the February statement, effectively ends any media discussion, including social media, of issues that might effect the course of the inquests (including recent debates here on crowd safety, crowd management, policing etc.). The main reason for this is because of the potential impact on the inquest jury. This does not apply from the moment the inquests begin, as has been interpreted previously, but from now. As stated below, the proceedings are 'currently active'. It also means that as evidence is heard there should be no comments, other than factual reporting, on the perceived status or veracity of that evidence. Already this decision has had consequences for programmes and publications, including my own, in the lead-in to the 25th Anniversary.

10 March 2014
 
HILLSBOROUGH INQUESTS

 

The inquests into the deaths of the 96 people who died as a result of the events at Hillsborough on 15 April 1989 are due to begin on 31 March 2014. 

The inquests will be heard by a Coroner (Lord Justice Goldring) together with a jury. 

Editors, publishers and social media users should note that the inquest proceedings are currently active for the purpose of the Contempt of Court Act 1981. 

The Attorney General wishes to draw attention to the risk of publishing material, including online, which could create a substantial risk that the course of justice in the inquests may be seriously impeded or prejudiced, particularly as this inquest involves a jury.

This risk could arise by commentary which may prejudge issues that witnesses may give evidence about, or matters that the jury will need to consider in reaching their verdict.  The inquests could also be prejudiced by publishing details of material (whatever its source) which may not form part of the evidence at the inquest. 

The Attorney General’s Office will be monitoring the coverage of these proceedings.

Editors, publishers and social media users should take legal advice to ensure they are in a position to fully comply with the obligations they are subject to under the Contempt of Court Act.  They are also reminded of the advisory note issued by Lord Justice Goldring on 11 February 2014.

For media enquiries please contact: The Attorney General’s Press Office on 020 7271 2448 or

pressoffice@attorneygeneral.gsi.gov.uk

 

 


 
 Bernadette Caffarey

Attorney General's Office| Treasury Solicitor’s Department |

E: bernie.caffarey@attorneygeneral.gsi.gov.uk  T: 020 7271 2440 M: 07867 520 314 

20 Victoria Street, London SW1H 0NF Out of hours pager: 07623 946316  Twitter: @ago_uk

 
 
« Last Edit: March 11, 2014, 11:31:15 AM by MichaelA »
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Offline Alan_X

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Re: Implications of AG's Advice
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2014, 07:54:29 PM »
Today's statement, following on from the February statement, effectively ends any media discussion, including social media, of issues that might effect the course of the inquests (including recent debates here on crowd safety, crowd management, policing etc.).

Is that just in relation to Hillsborough Phil? Or wider and current discussion of the issues.
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Re: Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests
« Reply #2 on: March 11, 2014, 09:28:57 AM »
I'm not sure I fully understand what you mean there, Al...

Just to add to what Phil has said: I am hearing of senior journalists, radio and print, and film-makers who are pulling stuff left, right and centre - material that they would not normally be afraid to run. But they're seriously edgy now.

It's not just the wording of the AG's statement, yesterday: read between the lines. He will come down like a ton of bricks on anyone who dares to prejudge the outcome or influence the jury. This is also a pointer - that the other side will use anything and everything they can to bolster their case, and perhaps to claim 'unfair proceedings'.

There is something in the AG's statement too that should make everyone think before they post on Rawk now:

The inquests could also be prejudiced by publishing details of material (whatever its source) which may not form part of the evidence at the inquest. 

Read that, read it again, and read it again...




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Offline DrAndrewWatt

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Re: Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests
« Reply #3 on: March 11, 2014, 09:31:34 AM »
Apparently the Attorney General will be on Radio 4 today at 16.00 and the discussion will include contempt of court.

See
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b03xf0gf

I'm not sure how directly relevant the discussion will be to the Hillsborough Inquests.

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Re: Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests
« Reply #4 on: March 11, 2014, 09:35:36 AM »
Very relevant, I should imagine - the media are in a fit about this.
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Offline MichaelA

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Re: Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests
« Reply #5 on: March 11, 2014, 10:10:26 AM »
A note to users;

- At this moment in time, this board is no longer visible to guests - you need to be a registered user, logged in to view the board
- Sensitive topics have been removed or locked
- Please do not post any new material relating to the investigations from any source



Offline Hij

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Re: Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests
« Reply #6 on: March 11, 2014, 10:22:34 AM »
Understood.
Justice for Anne Williams
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Offline uwinsa

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Re: Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests
« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2014, 10:29:14 AM »
A note to users;

- At this moment in time, this board is no longer visible to guests - you need to be a registered user, logged in to view the board
- Sensitive topics have been removed or locked
- Please do not post any new material relating to the investigations from any source

Totally understand why you've done this but it means I can't view this forum on my phone which once the inquests are started will be my main way of keeping up with whats happening. Is there anyway you will be able to have a locked news only thread (like you did for the report release) that is viewable by guests?

Offline MichaelA

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Re: Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests
« Reply #8 on: March 11, 2014, 10:30:51 AM »
Totally understand why you've done this but it means I can't view this forum on my phone which once the inquests are started will be my main way of keeping up with whats happening. Is there anyway you will be able to have a locked news only thread (like you did for the report release) that is viewable by guests?

Maybe; at the moment compliance is our main issue. You could always log in on your phone ;) :wave

Offline uwinsa

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Re: Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2014, 10:36:00 AM »
Maybe; at the moment compliance is our main issue. You could always log in on your phone ;) :wave

Never been able to for some reason and now I've forgotten my password (this computer stays logged in)

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Re: Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2014, 11:02:09 AM »
Never been able to for some reason and now I've forgotten my password (this computer stays logged in)
Are you sure it's not your browser or virus protection that remembers your pass words unwinsa. easy enough to find out.
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Offline gazzalfc

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Re: * Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests *
« Reply #11 on: March 11, 2014, 02:31:39 PM »
Think its fair enough

Better to be safe and not give anyone an excuse. Its such a delicate time and I agree that its better not to take any chances. Let the truth speak for itself in a proper legal environment.

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Re: * Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests *
« Reply #12 on: March 11, 2014, 04:50:06 PM »
I will hold back from adding anything new to the Hillsborough AV archive until the inquests have concluded to be on the safe side.

I guess it would be ok to put a message in that thread asking posters not to post any new links in there, but instead to pm them to me so I can post a record of proceedings afterwards ?
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Offline Alan_X

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Re: * Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests *
« Reply #13 on: March 11, 2014, 11:54:50 PM »
I'm not sure I fully understand what you mean there, Al...

Phil referred to recent "debates about crowd safety, crowd management and policing etc... "

Discussions about the reintroduction of safe standing are bound to touch on Hillsborough and posts in the threads on the Duggan inquest, the Plebgate affair and Stephen Lawrence drew comments about the behaviour of the police that could be seen as prejudicial. Are those off limits or is it just discussion of those issues as they relate directly to Hillsborough?

Sorry if the question seems pedantic but I just want to be sure.
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Re: * Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests *
« Reply #14 on: March 12, 2014, 06:08:37 PM »
Ah, got you...

Who's to know, mate? It seems the safest option - given the extraordinary dragnet the attorney general has deployed - is to refrain from any comment about Hillsborough from now on, however seemingly innocuous.




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Offline uwinsa

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Re: Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests
« Reply #15 on: March 12, 2014, 06:16:06 PM »
Are you sure it's not your browser or virus protection that remembers your pass words unwinsa. easy enough to find out.

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Offline XabiAlonsosBeard

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Re: * Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests *
« Reply #16 on: March 20, 2014, 03:30:44 PM »
It's a shame the Reading Chronicle haven't followed the AG's advice.
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Re: * Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests *
« Reply #17 on: March 20, 2014, 10:06:44 PM »
It's a shame the Reading Chronicle haven't followed the AG's advice.
beat me to it. Was about to post identical post

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« Last Edit: March 21, 2014, 09:54:25 AM by No666 »
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Re: * Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests *
« Reply #19 on: March 21, 2014, 10:11:16 AM »
Fair play to reading fC

Reading FC have suspended their relationship with the Reading Chronicle over the front page and its associated articles.

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Re: * Implications of Attorney General's Advice re; Inquests *
« Reply #20 on: March 23, 2014, 01:23:19 AM »
I wonder if the Attorney General will act upon that.
http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/campaigners-react-angrily-after-reading-6857241

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Attorney General's Office investigates Reading Chronicle's Hillsborough slurs, reports @NeilDockingECHO http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/reading-chronicles-hillsborough-slurs-investigated-6863617
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