A reporter who received an anti-harassment warning from the Metropolitan Police after approaching a convicted fraudster for a comment has been honoured for the third year in a row at the Regional Press Awards.
His entries included the Advertiser’s front page story headlined ‘Shameless’ exposing the activities of serial conwoman Neelam Desai.
Desai complained to the Met after Gareth attempted to secure a comment from her and the police then served him with a prevention of harassment notice.
Gareth later complained to the Metropolitian Police about his treatment, but the complaint was dismissed. He has since appealed to the Independent Police Complaints Commission.
The judges said had displayed “admirable fortitude” in standing up to the harrassment allegations and linked his treatment to the post-Leveson “chill” affecting the industry.
“Gareth produced a stunning set of investigations and stories which could grace the pages of any national newspaper,” they said.
“Gareth leaves no stone unturned to deliver his work and showed admirable fortitude in standing up to accusations of harassment from the police. In a post-Leveson world it is only right that it received national attention.”