Cliff Richard: BBC bosses ‘ought to carry the can’ (News)


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Media captionThe singer wins BBC privateness case at Excessive Courtroom however how did it get to this

Senior BBC managers should “carry the can”, Sir Cliff Richard has mentioned, after successful his privateness case over the protection of a police raid on his house.

A Excessive Courtroom choose mentioned the BBC had infringed the singer’s privateness rights in a “severe and sensationalist manner”.

Sir Cliff was not arrested or charged over the historic youngster intercourse declare and instructed ITV News: “If heads roll then possibly it is as a result of it was deserved.”

The BBC mentioned journalists acted in good religion and it’s contemplating an attraction.

The choose, Mr Justice Mann, awarded Sir Cliff an preliminary £210,00.

He rejected the BBC’s case that its reporting of South Yorkshire Police’s raid of Sir Cliff’s flat in Sunningdale, Berkshire, in August 2014, which included footage filmed from a helicopter, was justified below rights of freedom of expression and of the press.

Chatting with ITV’s Julie Etchingham, Sir Cliff, 77, mentioned: “They [senior managers] have to hold the can. I do not know the way they’ll do it, however they will should….

“It is too huge a choice to be made badly. It was nonsense.”

‘Choose, jury and executioner’

Describing the court docket’s resolution as an “monumental aid” and “extremely emotional”, Sir Cliff mentioned his intention behind bringing the case was to not curtail press freedom.

“I desire a correction made to what occurred to me and it was made, no one mentioned something about freedom of speech however I’ll struggle to the dying in opposition to the abuse of the liberty of speech, what the BBC did was an abuse… they took it upon themselves to be choose, jury and executioner.”

He went on to name for individuals to have the proper to anonymity till they’re charged.

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Media captionFollowers of Sir Cliff Richard cheered and sang his 1968 track Congratulations outdoors court docket

BBC director of editorial coverage and requirements David Jordan mentioned resignations have been “not essentially the proper response to each mistake that each journalist makes in a News organisation”.

He mentioned the BBC didn’t remorse contesting the case as a result of a “substantial and vital” subject – regarding individuals being investigated by police – had been at stake.

However he mentioned components of the best way the unique report was introduced – such because the size of time the BBC gave Sir Cliff to answer the claims and “maybe using the helicopter” – may need been completed in another way.

Mr Jordan mentioned the BBC will look in depth on the 200-page judgement earlier than deciding on whether or not or to not attraction.

Talking outdoors the Excessive Courtroom, the BBC’s director of News and present affairs Fran Unsworth apologised to Sir Cliff however she mentioned, the case marked a “vital shift” in opposition to press freedom and an “essential precept” across the public’s proper to know was at stake.

In a press release, she mentioned: “Even had the BBC not used helicopter pictures or ran the story with much less prominence, the Choose would nonetheless have discovered that the story was illegal; regardless of ruling that what we broadcast in regards to the search was correct.”

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Media captionThe BBC’s director of News says the ruling is a “vital shift in opposition to press freedom”

In his judgement, Mr Justice Mann mentioned a suspect in a police investigation “has an affordable expectation of privateness” and whereas Sir Cliff being investigated “could be of curiosity to the gossip-monger”, there was not a “real public curiosity” case.

He additionally mentioned whereas the case might have a “vital affect on press reporting”, it didn’t imply the legislation was altering or he was setting a precedent – because the Human Rights Act already covers the problems at stake, specifically the proper to privateness versus proper to freedom of expression.

He awarded Sir Cliff £190,000 damages and an additional £20,000 in aggravated damages after the BBC submitted its protection of the raid for an award.

The BBC should pay 65% of the £190,000 and South Yorkshire Police, which carried out the raid, 35%.

South Yorkshire Police had earlier agreed to pay Sir Cliff £400,000 after settling a declare he introduced in opposition to the power.

Chief Constable Stephen Watson mentioned he accepted the court docket’s findings and the power had accepted and apologised for its errors at a “very early stage”.

The choose mentioned he would maintain one other listening to to find out additional damages after the singer mentioned his plans for “skilled work” have been “critically disrupted” within the wake of the protection.

Evaluation: ‘Darkish day for News reporting’

By BBC authorized correspondent Clive Coleman

Immediately’s judgement could be very vital.

The choose discovered it was not merely the BBC’s use of helicopter photos which breached Sir Cliff’s proper to privateness. The straightforward naming of Sir Cliff as a suspect within the police investigation amounted to a breach of his privateness.

It means, going ahead, people who find themselves suspects in police investigations, save in distinctive circumstances, are entitled to moderately count on the matter is saved personal and never lined by the media.

That’s the reason the BBC is broadening this out and saying, in impact, it is a darkish day for News reporting.

among the police investigations lined up to now, the BBC factors out that naming the suspects has generally resulted in further complainants coming ahead.

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Media captionSir Cliff Richard’s lawyer mentioned the singer “aimed to proper a mistaken”

Standing alongside Sir Cliff outdoors court docket, his solicitor Gideon Benaim mentioned the singer’s motivation was “not for private acquire” however to “proper a mistaken”.

He mentioned his consumer had provided to settle earlier with the BBC for “cheap” damages and an apology, however the BBC had been “defiant”.

‘Inventive limbo’

In his proof, Sir Cliff had mentioned within the years main as much as August 2014, he had labored usually, launched a brand new album each 18 months or so and normally performed a lot of live shows.

However he mentioned he had been left “in impact in artistic limbo” for 2 years till prosecutors mentioned he wouldn’t face any costs.

Sir Cliff claimed his proper to privateness below the Human Rights Act had been violated whereas the BBC argued that the identical act protects freedom of expression.

The Society of Editors mentioned that the judgement “threatens the power of the media as a complete to police the police”.

Ian Murray, its government director, mentioned: “The ruling to make it illegal that anybody below investigation may be named is a serious step and one which has worrying penalties for press freedom and the general public’s proper to know.”


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