Following its sensational 'outing' of footballer, Ryan Giggs, last Sunday – to expose the disconnect between the media being subject to a gagging order when the information supposedly being suppressed is common knowledge on the internet – the Sunday Herald today majors on the on-going debate in the UK over injunctions and super injunctions by devoting six pages to what it terms … 'The legal crisis which strikes at the very heart of Britain'.
The special focus on the issue – written by the paper’s political editor, Tom Gordon; investigations editor, Paul Hutcheon; and freelance, Kenny Kemp' – also has an opinion piece by media law specialist, Paul March, a partner of law firm, Clintons.
The paper examines the current status of the Scottish courts – given fresh impetus by the decision by the UK Supreme Court to quash the conviction of Nat Fraser, an Elgin businessman, for the murder of his wife. Fraser will learn on the eighth of next month if he faces a retrial at the High Court in Edinburgh.
Says the paper: “The Scottish Government last night [Saturday] said that, as a priority, the Supreme Court should have ‘no role in matters of Scots criminal law and ultimately no role in Scots civil law either’.”
There is also a lengthy editorial article on the issue, the paper, adding, in a contents article: “We woke up on Sunday morning to find our decision to identify Ryan Giggs as the footballer at the heart of the super injunction controversy picked up by media all over the world.
“The story dominated the news agenda for days … and achieved our aim of provoking debate and action on the ludicrous situation which prevented the mainstream media reporting information easily available on the internet.
“The Giggs injunction, amazingly, remains in place but he has been named on television, radio and newspapers all over the world.
“We return to the issue today … looking at the fall-out from the controversy and the further problems caused by the quashing of Nat Fraser’s murder conviction by the UK Supreme Court.
“But we are not naming anyone covered by an injunction – although we would argue we would not be breaking any law if we were to do so – because we believe last week’s front page served the purpose for which it was intended.
“We would like to pass on our thanks to the many, many readers who sent messages of support for our stand on the issue.”