Grimsby Telegraph's Gary Allen legal battle used in journalists' bible
THE legal battle by the Grimsby Telegraph to publicly name a dangerous sex offender has made it into print as a major training aid for other newspapers.
The case centres around Gary Allen, jailed for sexually assaulting and attacking sex workers just months after being cleared of the murder of a prostitute.
The Telegraph's legal battle to publicly name Allen as a warning to women in the town has been published in the latest edition of McNae's Essential Law For Journalists, the legal training bible for all journalists.
It was his move to Grimsby in April 2010 after being released from prison that led to a long legal fight by the Telegraph to name him and publish his picture to highlight the danger living in our community.
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In doing so, the Telegraph was taken to the High Court and accused of being in breach of the Contempt of Court Act.
The Telegraph's deputy editor, Michelle Hurst, said: "I worked for several months on the case, initially finding ways round court orders to name Allen, and then to defend our right to publish those details before a High Court judge – at considerable expense.
"Readers will remember that Allen claimed we had breached his human rights by publishing his name in relation to a Sexual Offences Prevention Order (SOPO) that stopped him from approaching prostitutes. To have the case printed in McNae's is one of the highest honours for a journalist, and will hopefully help other publications realise that there are ways to defend our right to publish matters of huge public importance, despite what the results of the Leveson Inquiry might bring."
The High Court judge backed the Telegraph at the time, throwing out Allen's claims and vindicating our coverage.
Allen left Grimsby soon after the publication, but was arrested days later for breaking his SOPO and attacking a police officer and returned to prison.
It is not known where he now lives.