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Angela Wrightson murder

John Elvidge QC and Jim Withyman (instructed by TBI) represented the younger girl accused, aged 13, of the notorious killing of Angela Wrightson in her Hartlepool home: News report

Mr Justice Globe’s sentencing remarks can be read here

The case raised many important issues including the management of a lengthy trial of vulnerable defendants, press reporting and how to address prejudicial comment on social media. A jury was discharged following an “avalanche of public outrage on social media” and blanket reporting restrictions were imposed until conclusion of the retrial. Nine national media organisations appealed and the prohibition was lifted by Leveson LJ but replaced with a novel order that required the appellants not to put any report of the trial on their Facebook pages and to disable the ability for users to post comments on their news websites. The Court of Appeal also called for the Attorney General to conduct a wider consultation so that appropriate guidance on social media and prejudice in criminal trials should be issued. For a full transcript of the CA decision see R v F & D [2016] EWCA Crim 12. After the trial anonymity orders were preserved for the defendants.

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