Jerry Springer: not blasphemous libel

Judicial review of decision not to prosecute BBC over programme fails

Christian Voice, an evangelical Christian organisation, has failed to overturn a Magistrates’ decision not to allow a prosecution against the BBC and theatrical producers of Jerry Springer – The Opera as blasphemous libel.

Christian Voice brought judicial review proceedings against the decision not to prosecute the BBC and stage show producers last month. Lord Justice Hughes and Mr Justice Collins ruled that the broadcast could not ‘in context’ be considered blasphemous and was not as a whole an attack on the Christian religion or its symbols.

The Court observed that the production had been performed nightly for two years in London’s West End without giving rise to protest or civil strife. The civil rights group Liberty was permitted to intervene in the case and lodge written argument that Britain’s blasphemy laws were anachronistic.

Click here for the 5RB case report and full judgment.