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Complainant Name:
A woman

Clauses Noted: 3, 9

Publication: Daily Star


A woman from Plymouth complained that a photograph and caption that accompanied an article headlined "Beast of Bodmin" published in the Daily Star on May 21 1999 identified her in breach of Clause 3 (Privacy) and Clause 10 (Innocent relatives and friends) of the Code of Practice.

The complaint was upheld

The article was about the convicted rapist Richard Baker and was illustrated with numerous photographs of women who were acquainted with him. One of these photographs was a topless one of the complainant accompanied by a caption which named her, gave her city of residence and said that she had been a girlfriend of Richard Baker.

The complainant said that this was an unacceptable invasion into her privacy and identified her in breach of Clause 10 of the Code.

The newspaper said that it had been supplied the photographs by a freelance photographer and that they had been used to illustrate Richard Baker's 'extraordinary lifestyle'. It contended that the complainant knew she was being photographed and was happy to pose. The newspaper denied that the Code of Practice had been breached but offered to publish an apology in the newspaper.



Although the Commission was pleased that the editor had offered to publish an apology, it did not agree that the Code had not been breached. The complainant was entitled to believe that such an intimate photograph would have remained private and the Commission could see no public interest justification for naming her. In the circumstances, the offer to publish an apology without accepting that the Code had been breached was an inadequate remedy.


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