||All England Reporter
|| All ER (D) 274 (Dec)
Auld LJ and Ouseley J
||Philip Havers (instructed by the Treasury Solicitor) for the Attorney General.
||Andrew Caldecott (instructed by BBC Head of Legal Services) for the first and second respondents.
||18 December 2001
Contempt of court - Publications concerning legal proceedings - Risk of interference with course of justice - Police guaranteeing anonymity to witness in indecency trial - Television programme subsequently broadcast revealing name of witness and details of abuse suffered - Broadcast of programme resulting in devastating consequences for witness - Both respondents admitting liability - Matters to be considered by court in imposing penalty - Whether court should impose separate penalties on respondents.
The cloak of anonymity with regard to complainant or prosecution witnesses was absolute unless waived, and the central issue where the identity of the complainant witness had been revealed was the potential damage to justice based on the strict liability rule in s1 of the . In the instant case, as the respondents had admitted to their actions, the issue was one of penalty, and in deciding on the appropriate penalty, the court would consider all mitigating factors, the conduct of the respondents, and the distress caused to the witness.
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