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Convict has complaint over daily’s reporting of court case rejected

A man convicted for selling a computer hacking tool has had his complaint about a regional daily’s reporting of his court case rejected by the press watchdog.

The Bolton News reported Craig Fox’s conviction in a story based on a police press release, but he claimed it was inaccurate because the newspaper omitted that several charges against him had also been dropped.

Complaining to the Independent Press Standards Organisation under Clause 1 (Accuracy) and Clause 2 (Privacy) of the Editors’ Code of Practice, Fox claimed the police had no evidence to support his conviction and said the decision to publish the name of the street on which he lived had intruded into his private life and put his personal safety at risk.

The News responded that the article accurately reported the press release that was published by the North West Regional Organised Crime Unit, which it provided to IPSO, adding police had confirmed the charges the complainant had been convicted of when it checked.

Bolton Crown Court, where Fox was sentenced

Bolton Crown Court, where Fox was sentenced

It offered to publish a clarification making it clear that one charge relating to website defacement had been dropped and outlining the four offences he was convicted of, and said it was standard practice to publish convicts’ names and street addresses to help distinguish between others in the area who may have the same name.

The complaint was not upheld, and the full adjudication here.

Elsewhere, Paisley-based newspaper The Gazette has become the fourth title in Scotland to be rapped by IPSO for publishing details which could have led to a sex assault victim’s identification.

IPSO has also upheld complaints on the same matter against Glasgow-based dailies The Herald and the Daily Record, as well as the Paisley Daily Express, this month.

The full adjudication against The Gazette can be read here.