THE ARGUS LINKS
The Argus breach Court Order
It was revealed last week that the Argus breached a Court Order preventing publication on a blanket basis, concerning the so-called Herstmonceux Bunny Boiler case. This Order was made specifically to preserve the rights of the parties, to a fair hearing. It begs the question, if such an Order was made and breached, could the parties have received a fair hearing?
It is unclear where this leaves the Argus and what action the Police might take to ensure publication of this nature is prevented by over eager Reporters and Editors, who perhaps have an eye on sensationalism to generate headlines to sell newspapers, rather than the damage that could be inflicted on the persons affected. This is the subject of much media attention following the revelation of multiple suicides at Bridgend in Wales, in part attributed by some to the sensationalist newspaper reporting. The latest girl to take her own life by hanging being 16 year old Jenna Parry.
Jenna Parry, Suicide victim Bridgend
Readers will know the Government, after consideration of Lord Goldsmith, are considering moves to protect the identity of those accused of sexual offences, much the same as their accusers. This is because of the rise of innocent men being convicted by Juries, and only after serving considerable time in prison, is new evidence found to render guilty verdicts unsafe.
This could leave news hounds eager for material to print, out in the cold. However, the moral implications are clear. Allegations of a sexual nature ruin lives. See the links below to sample cases in 2007, where publication and subsequent scandal have ruined lives. The accusers inevitably get away scot-free. The newspaper hounds and the editors that helped ruin lives, on occasion even sway public opinion to deliver an incorrect verdict, also find themselves in the clear.
These are some of the examples of women falsely accusing men who were innocent. What is wrong with our legal system?
FACT: Girls making allegations are coached. YES, this is true, they are instructed how to give evidence and cosseted, sometimes isolated via a video link to make it easier for them to appear sweetness and light.
Barristers are loath to question hard, for fear of looking like bullies to a Jury.
"These girls are every mans worst nightmare". - Warren Blackwell 2006
Here's what readers have had to say!
This is scandalous. I think that if the members of the jury knew just how slow the appeals process is they would be much less inclined to find people guilty when there is 'reasonable doubt'. In practice it is very difficult when people are found guilty on this kind of case where there is NO evidence; if there is no evidence in the first place then where is the 'fresh evidence' that may be required for an appeal to go ahead going to come from? These cases only seem to win on appeals when a false accuser admits to lying and that is very rare. Unfortunately as Mr Carrington-Jones has said there could be many innocent people in prison now as a result of convictions on non-evidence. Where will his compensation come from? Will the woman be charged? - Lily, Hull
Compensation is rightly due to this poor chap, but should the public pay the price of the crimes committed by these lying women? Shouldn't they be made to pay, even if it means their being financially ruined for life? And surely it cannot be the case that parole cannot be considered unless and until a prisoner "admits" the crime for which he/she has been found guilty? - Jim, London
Attorney General Lord Goldsmith is to step down after six years in office - June 2007
He said he will leave his post next week - as Tony Blair quits after 10 years as prime minister.
Lord Goldsmith said he had been "immensely privileged" to serve what had been a record period of time for a Labour attorney general.
Tony Blair praised the work of Lord Goldsmith and said he could look at his time as attorney general with "personal and professional pride".
Lord Goldsmith said he had wanted to move on for some time and had told Mr Blair and Gordon Brown he believed that now was the right time to make that move.
In his resignation letter to Mr Blair, the government's legal adviser acknowledged the "challenge" of advising on the legality of the war in Iraq.
There was controversy over his advice that the 2003 invasion would be legal under international law amid claims he changed it under political pressure - something which he vehemently denies.
In his letter, Lord Goldsmith wrote of the past six years: "It hardly needs saying that during that period we have faced a host of challenges, many of them raising important legal questions.
"These include two conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, the fight against terrorism, the balancing of individual rights and collective security, continuing constitutional reform and the great progress towards peace and stability in Northern Ireland.
"I have been privileged to play my part in meeting these challenges."
Founded in 1880, and for many years known as the 'Evening Argus', it is owned by Newsquest (since 1999, part of the US Gannett media group) which had in 1996 bought the Argus and its sister Westminster Press titles from the provincial papers group's parent, the Pearson Group. Like many of the UK's local and regional newspapers, the Argus has suffered from a declining circulation – as audited by the ABC circulations and ratings group. It has fallen progressively, from a peak of 100,000 in the early 1980s to 38,223 in the second half of 2004.
Newsquest has launched Argus Lite is a daily free edition for distribution to commuters at some Sussex railway stations to compete with free daily newspapers from London, notably Metro. It also publishes free weeklies, including the Brighton and Hove Leader, the Mid Sussex Leader, the Uckfield Leader and the South Coast Leader for door-to-door delivery to homes.
Sales and Promotions
The Argus Achievement Awards 2007 sponsored by EDF Energy are your chance to toast the good people of Sussex and honour the remarkable work carried out by so many people in the community.
A magnificent night was had by all who attended the sixth annual Argus Achievement Awards to honour the courageous and selfless people of Sussex. Ruth Lumley was at the Brighton Hilton Metropole to speak to those special people who have made a difference.
The guests of honour at Thursday's glittering Argus Achievement Awards night were all winners in the eyes of everyone who attended.
All the finalists were invited to enjoy a drinks reception, a meal and entertainment from Brighton samba band Barulho, before BBC News 24 presenter Nicholas Owen took to the stage to compere the evening.
He said: "In February The Argus, supported by EDF Energy, launched The Argus Achievement Awards for the sixth year. The response was overwhelming but there could only be three shortlisted for each category and eventually the judging panel narrowed the nominations down."
Achiever of the Year was presented by Mr Owen's former ITN colleague Carol Barnes. It was won by Lorraine Snow, 50, whose determination has turned around the lives of so many young people.
She spent seven years building up a youth centre near her home in Whitehawk, Brighton, to provide a club to keep teenagers off the streets.
It became known as The Crew Club and their new club building was officially opened by Prince Philip last month.
She said: "I was not expecting it. It's great for the club and the young people.
They will all be reading the coverage in The Argus and will be really excited about it."
The Angel of the Year award was presented by Frank le Duc, deputy editor of The Argus, and was won by Frances Tarr, a senior staff nurse at the Sussex Rehabilitation Centre in Brighton, who provides specialist wound care for amputees.
She said: "It is marvellous for Sussex Rehabilitation Centre and great for the patients and my team It has all been down to a great team effort."
The third award was Pupil of the Year, presented by John Richards, head of social markets at EDF Energy. Aaron Odedra, 16, won the award for making a positive contribution to the community and to Falmer High School where he is a pupil.
He said: "I am very surprised and very happy. I think it is nice to know you are making a difference at school."
Actress Avril Gaynor presented the Parent of the Year Award to mum in a million Peggy Ferris, 59, who six years ago discovered she had a malignant brain tumour.
The tumour was removed but Peggy, of Old Salts Farm Road, Lancing, found out she had breast cancer in 2005, then her brain tumour returned. Despite going through operations and gruelling treatment she has carried on fostering children without a thought for herself.
Peggy said: "I feel so overwhelmed and I cannot believe it. There are so many people more deserving than me.
"To have all my friends and family round me is just amazing. It has been a lovely, wonderful evening."
Charity of the Year was won by Extratime, an after-school club at Hillside in Portslade, started by Becky Jenner and Marian Tipler, who both have severely disabled children. The award was presented by local author Peter James, whose DS Roy Grace novels are based in Brighton.
Becky said: "We are flabbergasted but very excited to have won. With our charity we have just got on with the work we needed to do, but it is important to us and to many people living in Brighton and Hove. We need to attract new funding all the time so this award is fantastic."
Good Neighbour of the Year went to John Roberts who has worked harder than most to serve his community and has overcome depression and disability. The award was presented by Oliver Heath, of BBC's Changing Rooms. John, 44, said: "I couldn't believe I won It's lovely that people are now recognising what I do."
The judges found it hard to choose a courageous child from all the nominations so all four finalists received an award.
They were Ellie Courant, three, who tragically died on February 16 at Chestnut Tree House Children's Hospice in Poling, near Arundel, after an 18-month battle against a cancerous brain tumour.
She never grumbled throughout her illness and inspired everyone around her.
Ten-year-old Laura Greenfield always dreamed of being able to swim like a mermaid and finally got her wish last year after she underwent an operation which allowed her to breathe properly.
She is believed to be the only person in England born with a condition which paralysed her vocal cords, leaving her unable to breathe without a tube.
Brave Lucy Porritt, nine, was born with Sodium Valporate syndrome, which left her with weak muscle tone and bones. She has undergone many operations.
Charlie Burnett, 11, was born with Apert's Syndrome which affects the head, face and limbs. She spent much of her early childhood in Great Ormond Street Hospital and also had many operations.
The children's awards were presented by Southern FM breakfast show presenter Danny Pike, and the room fell silent as Ellie's parents, Lorraine and Gary, asked to say a few words about their daughter.
Lorraine said: "It is now eight weeks since our precious daughter left usWe miss her beautiful smile, her cheeky sense of fun and most of all her hugs and kisses.
"Ellie was only two years old when she was diagnosed with a brain tumour. She taught us so much throughout her illness.
"Gary and I are honoured to accept this award not just for Ellie but for all her little friends she made through her treatment."
Trevor Allen, headteacher of Dorothy Stringer School in Brighton, was the winner of Teacher of the Year.
Dorothy Stringer won School of the Year at last year's awards and Trevor's infectious enthusiasm for teaching made him the perfect winner this time round.
He was presented with his award by celebrity chef Momma Cherri. He said: "I am part of the best community of people which you could ever wish to be part of.
"The award reflects the community we have built at Dorothy Stringer."
The ninth award was Beyond the Call of Duty, presented in honour of Jeff Tooley, who was killed by a hit-and-run driver in Shoreham seven years ago.
His mother Veronica presented Warren Cooper with the award. He was nominated after he gave up his job and put his life on hold to find treatment for his brother Neil, who was diagnosed with terminal cancer.
Sadly, Neil died but Warren's research and fund-raising mean he had ten months extra with his wife Wendy and their baby daughter Caitlin.
School of the Year went to St Andrew's Primary in Hove which received an "outstanding" in all areas of its last Ofsted inspection. The award was presented by journalist and author Lynne Truss.
The Adam Faith Local Hero Award was given to Brian Wembridge and Geoff Wicker, the firefighters who lost their lives in the Lewes fireworks factory explosion.
Michael Beard, the editor of The Argus, was invited onto the stage to read the nominations and present the award to East Sussex Chief Fire Officer Des Prichard.
Mr Prichard said: "On behalf of the families I would like to thank everyone who recognised the courage of Brian and Geoff.
"They were very good friends of mine and this is a tribute from the public of East Sussex who have recognised their contribution and sacrifice."
The Contribution to Sussex Award was given to Derek Hunnisett, who has been involved with charities in Sussex for more than 40 years.
Mr Hunnisett, 75, received the award from Martyn Willis, managing director of The Argus, for his contribution to the community.
Mr Hunnisett started his career as a barrister and became involved in buying property in London with his father.
In the Sixties he diversified into retailing and when the famous Hanningtons store in Brighton hit financial trouble he stepped in. The store traded successfully until 2001.
Mr Hunnisett has also been a director of the Martlets Hospice in Hove for nine years and a member of the Development Council of the University of Sussex, with particular interest in the Medical School.
He is vice-president of the Rocking Horse Appeal and his charity work continues in his avid support of The Argus Appeal, helping the paper raise money for individuals and charities across Sussex.
A lover of astronomy, a black belt in judo, a racehorse owner and a steward at Brighton Racecourse for more than 20 years, his talents and interests know no bounds.
Mr Hunnisett said: "I feel very surprised as my family and I were kept in the dark about it, but it's very pleasant. I feel very honoured."
A - Z of Sussex officer investigations
The above is just a few of a number of persons likely to be investigated in respect of certain cases brought against Wealden Action Group members, with the backing of known Masons, councillors, police or planning officers, many of which are themselves Masons.
Its all too easy to set someone up. Nurse a wild allegation, coach and craft a claim of abuse, use a disturbed child or family as an excuse to go after someone who has had the nerve to stand up against the powers that be. When this happens, it makes a mockery of Freedom of Speech, but it shuts down a would be protagonist and preserves the status quo. The law as it stands allows accusers to remain anonymous, while those accused are easy targets for the press as circulation boosters. Lord Goldsmith is considering a change in the law to protect those wrongly accused, especially those more likely to come up against such accusation, such as Teachers. But will he follow through?
And what of the status quo? Global Warming, Government Corruption, Unaccountability, War and Famine. Is this what you want to hear day in and day out? Would you rather see an international society where everyone is treated fairly and decently?
(Falsely Accused Carers and Teachers)
for education staff and volunteers in schools
News A to Z directory, please click on the links below to find your favourite news or to contact the media to tell your story:
Flashers go free as CPS admits it boobed
A pair of women arrested by police after flashing their breasts at a CCTV camera have had charges against them dropped.
Abbi-Louise Maple, from Worthing, and Rachel Marchant, from Shoreham, were taken in by officers on July 16 after the pair lifted their tops and exposed themselves to a camera outside the Aquarena in Brighton Road, Worthing.
The woman were later charged with outraging public decency and ordered to appear in court.
But yesterday the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) decided to drop the case, which would have cost the public purse £10,000 a day if it had gone to a crown court trial.
A CPS spokesman said: "The Chief Crown Prosecutor, Sarah Jane Gallagher, in consultation with Sussex Police, has subsequently reviewed the case and she has decided that to continue with the case would not be in the public interest.
"The case has therefore been discontinued."
The girls had told The Argus they were a bit "tipsy" when they flashed and said they thought they would give the camera operator a treat.
Abbi-Louise, who has aspirations to be a glamour model, said: "We thought he'd go, 'Oi, oi' and it would have made his day.
"Breasts are everywhere these days - on the beach, in magazines, everywhere."
The man behind the lens was not amused and subsequently reported them to the police who arrested the women as they walked home.
The two friends, both aged 21, were kept at Worthing police station for four hours after their arrest.
They appeared before magistrates in Worthing where the prosecutor told the court the girls flashed near a children's play area when a group of 15-year-olds had been walking nearby.
The cheeky pair had denied the charges.
Critics had accused the CPS of wasting court and police time and taxpayers money.
Speaking after the case was dropped, Abbi-Louise said: "I'm really pleased and just relieved it's all over.
"It's been silly but the law does what it has to do sometimes, whatever they think is right.
"They should be out catching rapists and perverts not two young girls having a bit of fun.
"It was ridiculous. The CPS made a right boob of themselves.
"I'm surprised they dropped the charges so quickly but they must have realised how silly it was.
"I'll be going out for a few drinks to celebrate but will be keeping well clear of any CCTV cameras. I've learned my lesson."
Their solicitor, Chris Chatterton, called it a "common sense decision."
He said: "We're all delighted. It's great news but never should have got this far in the first place."
Did the CPS made a common sense decision or should the women have faced a judge and jury? Have your say. Leave your comments at www.theargus.co.uk.
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