The Attorney General is taking legal action against a number of individuals who have published photographs said to show one of toddler James Bulger’s killers.
Dominic Grieve is launching contempt proceedings against anyone who has posted images purporting to be of Jon Venables, one of the pair who was convicted of the murder of James Bulger 20 years ago.
In a sternly worded statement on Monday, Mr Grieve’s office pointed out that breaches of the original injunction, which was to prevent the publication of any images or information purporting to identify Venables or his co-killer Robert Thompson, were potentially punishable by a fine, a prison sentence or both.
Images purporting to be of Venables post his release from prison were first posted on the internet on 14 February but were ordered to be taken down immediately.
In fact, the terms of the order mean that if a picture claims to be of Venables or Thompson, even if it is not actually them, is a breach of it, according to the attorney general’s office.
In addition, providing details of the new identities of Venables and Thompson or their whereabouts is also prohibited and this order applies to material that is on the internet.
Mr Grieve added that the order and its enforcement is intended to protect innocent members of the public, who might be incorrectly identified as one of the two men, as well as Venables and Thompson.
Given that it is very difficult to police information on the worldwide web, the fact that the Attorney General is taking action against individuals could act as a deterrent to others who might be tempted to breach the order.
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