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Should the accused be given anonymity?

Anonymity for both the defendant and the claimant in abuse cases isn't a realistic option, says Maryam Syed. The way these cases are reported must change instead

11 September 2013

Today all the tabloids are screaming with the acquittal of Coronation Street star Michael Le Vell on charges of rape and sexual assault. For two years he has had these allegations reported and in the last seven days the evidence of and his personal life and demons splashed across the front pages. It is anticipated that he will return to the cobbles of Weatherfield soon.

Yet on this same day the press have reported the further arrest of deputy speaker of the House of Commons Nigel Evans on sexual charges. Because of the inevitable publicity, he has already stood down from that role. His criminal liability is yet to be determined.

It raises yet again the debate which will not go to bed on whether accused individual's names should be given on their arrest, charge and trial or not unless they are convicted. It also raises the dual dichotomy- of justice to be done openly not secretly, the right of the public to know about allegations - as against the right of individu...

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