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Editors' concern on Bulger pair ruling

The Society of Editors has expressed concern over the ruling that the killers ofthe Merseyside toddler James Bulger will have their anonymity protected whenthey are released.

It fears others might use the tragedy of the toddler’s death, and the subsequent ruling, to mask their own identity in future.

The identities of Jon Venables and Robert Thompson, now both 18, will be keptsecret after they leave custody because of their “almost uniquecircumstances” which put them at serious risk of attack, Dame ElizabethButler-Sloss ruled.

SoE director Bob Satchwell said: “The key principles of justice are that itshould be fair and that it should be open.

“There are already too many restrictions on reporting the courts and this is another worrying precedent.

“If other high profile criminals seek to use the Bulger case as an excuse toclaim anonymity, the courts must take full note of the judge’s comments.

“The circumstances are indeed unique and the law should have no truck with others who might attempt to use this appalling tragedy for their own benefit.”

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