Trevor, National Union Of Journalists, Barry Watch discussed on The Tip Off
SABBARI's just gotten out of police cell to to find out his and Trevor Bernie's offices have been raided. It's a lot to handle. We bumped into the people from our office. Everybody sent right. We need to go. I think we need to get our heads right. This and I can remember saying well. I'm just going around the corner to cash machine and just walking off and getting the bustle. Dan Muller's just to see memorial because you couldn't phone or because you haven't got a phone and then thinking I'll just stay here tonight an waking up at three. AM unrealized in that it broken mabille because mcbeal was then. I had to stay in my own house. I think Oh God they're gonna come knocking on the door from the first of October. Our campaign started. This was an attack on press freedom. It was a bite catching the whistle blower catching the sources sending a message to the other journalists this saying don't ask the the awkward questions because if you do you'll end up in a police cell so out in the real world barry trial lawyers started working on a legal case from the US Alex Gibney was is getting involved to shouting about injustice and supporting where he could and they found some pretty incredible stuff. It turned out the main suspect for the massacre that that reported don well. He was the prosecution's main witness to people who they were using against us. The police had to prove reputational damage and the only way made the day could reputational damage was to go to Ronnie Hawthorne and say Durrani Hawthorne Ronnie. Did you see film. Oh yes at that. What did you think of with ops terrible which goes to investigate Romney because he said he has Iraq killing company or goes. Nobody wants to employ me anymore. Nobody wants me to kill rats anymore not very bizarre dot. They tried to stop boss publicly revealing that. Hawthorne was there me and prosecution education witness. They lead detectives against us. try to get this imposed on our bill that we couldn't speak about the witnesses. Mrs were even though we believe it should then ludicrous nature of the whole supposed- investigation the team soon realize realize this case will come down to arguments some pretty fundamental issues crucially it was our defense is this thing or article ten of the European Convention Human Rights and it says the journalists we have obligation to protect sources how we can expose wrongdoing when we find it but what the the trying to do us under was the section five of the Official Secrets Act which would have compelled all journalists the heart all material back did you weren't. I'm delighted if confidential government material comes into your a journalist possession journalist hostile Honda but they if they have one every journalist wouldn't have been lied to us that material they would have had the handed back. It was the first time that these two competing arguments principles. It's worth being tested against each other and a court of law and that's why it was so crucial for journalism that we had to win this. They realized was a case about far more than just them. It was a case it would create important case. Lofa gentlest in the future journalism was on trial here in the run-up to the trial bar in Trevor spoke out trying to get everyone and anyone to listen we go to westminister and we meet Lebron pays and Tori. MP's SNP LIBERAL SDLP rate across the board with her photograph taken with everybody with Boris Johnson and Tom Watson George MacDonald anybody who wanted their fade getting photographed with us. We did the mumps past for the men still on police bail. I'm and one by one organizations from across the world came out in support of Barry and Trevor Reporters Sans Frontier the Reporters Committee for the defence of the freedom of journalistic journalistic guy always forget their name in Washington today sent lawyers into the court the Media Lawyers Association which is the BBC The Guardian Old Bank Bank heavy hitters shame duly assistant general secretary of the National Union of journalists talking to the press outside the courthouse. This is an enormous public incest case this is not just about the right of Darnest isn't about human rights we have here to workers whose tunes have not being confiscated on the basis that soon doesn't like what they have gone be arrested on Puerto Complaint by the TSN. I E yes I despite the involvement of the next iron horse have let this investigation and today we stand here insulted IRA would our journalists would our members to maker because yet again we are being made the target we will not stand for that but if some notable absences to the high profile people that would often criticized foreign governments for repression of the press when silent people like then foreign Orange Secretary Jeremy Hunt Hello. I'm Jeremy Hunt. I'm here in Ethiopia for World Press Freedom Day and I'm here to highlight an issue that we need to be talking about more. Which is is that the basic freedoms that journalists need to do their job under threat all over the world last year ninety nine journalists were killed in the course of doing their Ajab another three hundred and fifty were imprisoned think there's an irony that Jeremy Haunting Amal Clooney and everybody else in the if every right to expose attacks on press freedom we are here because it's never been more dangerous to report the news and I'm honored to be asked contribute legal proposals on steps that governments can take to improve the protection of journalists by being the chair of a new independent legal panel? I support them one hundred percent when they're doing that but I think there's a certain huge spoonful of hypocrisy when for ten months don't they knew what was happening to travel Barney and our families and they did nothing. They never asked one question. They never asked to meet us. They never asked the AINU J. A. Produce. They never amnesty wrote on countless occasions asking them and it was just silence. I I don't know how serious they are about defensive press freedom. I just don't say hi you can ignore what happened on your own doorstep on the twentieth of May Two thousand nine hundred ninety nine months after they were first arrested. The day of the trial finally came over the course of three days bar in Trevor's lawyers argued that the freedom you must press to report was at stake here that Ah journalists had done exactly what they were supposed to do to protect their sources and there was no evidence all to suggest the document had been stolen by the defendant Barry Watch off from the court bench. He wasn't totally show what to make of it but things seem to be going. Well still these processes hostesses along. They weren't expecting judgment. Then monmouth cases like this often need a lot of mulling over the judge could take up to six months to hand down the ruling soon. It came time for the summing up to bring the haring to close on the thirty first of May Tan Pasta off. The court was absolutely debunked wasn't standing room. David Davies Dettori and pay was there are lots of different politicians came and went and I think the the judiciary saw because of the the the press coverage attended saw that this was a serious case and the judges rose and they said we're raising the kiss is finished but we're we're going to come back with an indication. We were expecting not to hear anything for six months. Within literally five minutes the reappeared and said that we had done absolutely nothing wrong. We acted at all times within the law and appropriately the key thing was that we had abided by the days code of ethics and that journalists are entitled to protect heck sources doubt as the crucial thing in the kiss that is illegal right up until the minute that a production order is served a journalist can destroy whatever she or he thinks is to protect the source. That is the law. We faded that we we've been totally vindicated. Burying Trevor were ecstatic. The judge told the court the material that was before the judge an immaterial which was subsequently demonstrated to us does not indicate that gentlest acted in anything anything other than a perfectly proper manner review to protecting their sources in a lawful way. He went on to say they were doing just what the National Union of journalists required them to do with forgot protecting the identity of their sources broadcasters Trevor Bernie Barry McCaffrey and their legal team carrying phones and documents which were seized from on them by the police inside a white van the rest of that items including computer hard drives the journalists were involved in a documentary trey about the lock in Ireland killings and it was after that that homes were searched and thousands of documents seized but it wasn't quite over yet. The judge has ordered the police to return the computer files and finds back to journalists and wants to destroy all copies of the material finding that they're being taken inappropriately. Police have say that they can't destroy this this material because it is all backed up on tip rather than digital another big cost millions to added into spliced PIP. The police want to hold on to this material which the courts have already told them they are illegally holding the place are Nice saying that they want to hold onto this material illegally for another ten years. It's not about arcus. It's not only press freedom but it's about the protection of individuals vigils if a court tales police or police force that they have illegally obtained information and they have to destroy that information. I'm sorry I have a police. Force can't say oh no sorry. We want to hold on it for another ten years. That's just not acceptable and that's the situation where we find ourselves in and we feel that if the police aren't compelled to do what the court has instructed that this is a major breach of data protection and a major breach of human even right.