Contempt of Court

Contempt of Court

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Once a suspect is arrested for an offence, or offences, legal restrictions apply. The 1981 Contempt of Court Act makes it a serious criminal offence, once someone’s been arrested, to publish anything which could prejudice their trial. Being arrested doesn’t in itself indicate guilt, so comments posted to the website which presume a suspect is guilty also risk defaming the suspect.

Please use caution when discussing reports of an arrest or court proceedings. Even linking to archived news stories, blog entries and comments may be unlawful as contempt law would usually prohibit any reference to the previous conviction(s) of someone facing new court proceedings.

In addition, courts sometimes impose restrictions that prohibit the publication of specific information such as names and addresses of defendants.