"Daft Arrest" Blogger Faces Thousands in Damages

Judgement was given today in the case of Jacqui Thompson, which followed what Twitter users have dubbed the #DaftArrest. The dispute started after Mrs Thompson was arrested for refusing to stop filming a council meeting in June 2011. She launched a legal challenge based on a letter responding to criticism of the council. However the High Court has dismissed this claim.

Carmarthenshire chief executive Mark James counter-sued and was awarded £25,000 of damages regarding three of her blog posts.

Pirate Party Justice Spokesperson Loz Kaye said:

"This judgement is very bad news for anyone who believes in holding government to account. It sends out the message that anyone thinking about criticising or even taking an interest should think again. We can not have a society where people are afraid to put up a blog post in case it costs them thousands of pounds.

The Pirate Party will continue to push for the right to film any council meeting, and the right to robust freedom of speech. In this time of local government cuts, it's more vital than ever that we know what is being done with our money. One thing it certainly should not be spent on is suing council tax payers. What was a daft arrest, is now a dafter judgement."

Friday, 15 March, 2013 - 11:45
Loz Kaye
+44 (0) 161 987 7880

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