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Daily admits Editors’ Code breach after drink-driver’s complaint

NewIPSOA regional daily has admitted breaching the Editors’ Code of Practice after a complaint by a convicted drink-driver.

South Cumbria daily The Mail accepted the breach following the woman’s complaint to the Independent Press Standards Organisation over its coverage of her court case.

The woman, who was unnamed in IPSO’s ruling, had been found guilty of drink-driving, but she took issue with two stories relating to the case which were published by The Mail.

The first reported she had failed to appear before court and that a warrant had been issued against her, while the second reported she had admitted to drink-driving.

Complaining under Clause 1 (Accuracy) of the Editors’ Code, the drink-driver she said that she had been excused from attending the court and that no warrant had been issued.

With regards to the second story, she said that she had not admitted to drink-driving but had been found guilty, and that the legal limit in England was 80mg of alcohol, so she had not been at twice the legal limit.

Accepted a breach of Clause 1, the Mail said a court reporter had attended the first hearing and had misread his notes after returning, believing that a warrant had been issued when it had not.

For the second story, it stated the reporter had confused the English drink-driving limit with the Scottish limit.

The Mail published corrections both online and in print in relation to both articles.

During the course of IPSO’s investigation, it also offered to delete both of the online, resolving the matter to the woman’s satisfaction.

As the complaint was successfully mediated, IPSO did not make a determination as to whether there had been any breach of the Code.

The full resolution statement can be read here.