February 10, 2005
The Sun fined for contempt
70k penalty for article in Irish edition
The Sun has been fined 100,000 Euros – around £70,000 – for contempt of court for an article in its Irish edition. The article, written in London although based on Dublin agency copy, was held to be prejudicial to the outcome of a murder trial.
Mr Justice White said that The Sun had made a “deliberate and conscious” effort to prejudice the trial of the three young men, using “pejorative” and “inflammatory” language. The judge told the jury at the Irish Central Criminal Court that the article was not fair or objective and had the capacity to interfere with the accused men’s right to a fair trial.
The men had been accused of the murder of Russell Deane in Co Louth in February 2003. After The Sun‘s article, and further inaccurate reports published in The Daily Mirror, The Irish Examiner and The Daily Star, the jury have now been discharged and a new trial date set.