Most of us who either read any newspapers, watch any channels on the box, or interest yourselves at all with the dual themes of Democratic Accountability and of Press Freedom, will have heard of the Leveson Report. It was a typical knee-jerk semi-Socialist over-reaction to a set of circumstances which were in fact covered by both Civil and Criminal Law. The Report was brought about by the actions of various newspaper groups whose reporters deliberately hacked into both ‘celebrities’ and ordinary members of the public’s mobile phones, downloaded the text and voice-mail messages, and published stories with the facts exposed by those illegally-obtained stories, for the sole purpose of increasing their sales. The wider stories, the court cases, and the ensuing Leveson Report are too well known to be repeated here; but there is one small but important section of the Report, and the ensuing Section 40 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013, which deserves much, much wider scrutiny, publicity and action.
Many of the so-called ‘celebs’ together with ordinary members of the public who had fallen into the phone-hacking net, formed a pressure group named Hacked Off; and determined that they should be revenged upon the newspapers who had spread the gossip, and in certain very circumscribed circumstances, vicious and criminal libels about certain persons. All of these stories were covered within court cases, and in many if not all cases, the injured parties were awarded large sums in compensation, as well as printed apologies. But, caught up within the stretch of ‘injured celebs’ was one very determined, but also very wealthy pervert, whose activities had been exposed, in great and gory detail, by the ‘News of the World’ of NewsCorp fame. Max Mosley, whose perversions and gruesome sexual fantasies had been splashed across the headlines, took the ‘News and Screws’ to court, and won on a technicality, because the newspaper had alleged that his orgies were tinged with Nazi overtones, and they had no real proof. He stated that “his life has been devastated by the News of the World story and the posting of the video footage on its website. He told the court that the publicity had been “totally devastating” for his wife of 48 years, and he could think of “nothing more undignified or humiliating” for his two sons to experience.” My response would be similar to that of Paul Staines, of Guido Fawkes fame, who said “If you wish to stay out of the newspapers, don’t get hookers to shove dildoes up your bum”.
However, devastated though he may have been; forced to resign from his commanding role in Formula One; Max Mosley has determined to use his vast wealth within the law to bring the British Press to heel. Read this masterly expose by Fraser Nelson, and then read on to the purpose of my post. I wish to propose a Petition on the Government Website to ask why this pernicious piece of Legislation should not be removed and expunged, as it, if enacted, would do exactly as Mr Nelson states.
The Petition asks:- “To require the Government to repeal Section 40 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013″
However, I am unable to bring the Petition forward without the assistance of at least five readers of my site, who would support such a Petition, and are willing to supply their e-mail addresses to further such a Petition. Such assistance should be sent to the OoL Address which is email@example.com; the site, for which I write, has kindly agreed to become a mailbox for this purpose alone!
Thanking you in anticipation