Coffee House

Would the Strasbourg Court end up in charge of any system of statutory regulation of the press?

27 November 2012

In just over 18 hours, advance copies of the Leveson Report will be sent to the Prime Minister, various ministers and the other party leaders. The expectation in Westminster is very much that the Prime Minister will steer away from statutory regulation, saying instead that he wants to see if a new beefed up form of independent but non statutory regulation can do the job. Others in the coalition, remain keen on the idea of a one line bill setting up a statutory based but independent regulator.

There is though, as there is with so many stories these days given its intrusion into our national life, an ECHR angle to this debate. One Tory Eurosceptic points out to me that any statutory regulation system would most likely end up with the Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg being the ultimate arbiter of it. Tellingly, Max Mosley has already tried—albeit, unsuccessfully—to use the Strasbourg Court to force newspapers to warn people before publishing a story about them.

Give the perfect gift this Christmas. Buy a subscription for a friend for just £75 and you’ll receive a free gift too. Buy now.

Show comments
  • Vulture

    For those smartarses who constantly claim that the ECHR has nothing whatever to do with the EU, check out that big round logo on the left shoulder of the smirking berk of a judge in the picture.

    • the viceroy’s gin

      …and the rug he’s standing on.

  • HooksLaw

    I am not sure what being ‘eurosceptic’ has to do with the ECHR – we were a founder member. Even without statutory regulation (and Max Mosley) I would have thought that even now if human rights were abused claimants could go to the ECHR.

    In order to make a claim to the ECHR…
    1. You must be a victim of a violation of one or more of the articles of the Convention.
    2. Before you make an application to the ECHR you must pursue any proceedings that you could take in the UK that are capable of providing you with an adequate remedy for the breach of your Convention rights.
    3. If there were no court proceedings that it was reasonable to expect you to take, then you must make your application within six months of the alleged breach of your Convention right.

    So with or without statutory regulation it seems to me you could go to the ECHR. Point (1) being perhaps the most salient.

    By all means tell me if I am wrong Mr Forsyth, but the above words are the ECHR’s own.

    • TomTom

      Have you ever brought ax case to the ECHR ? It is not as easy as you make out

  • VGA

    Ah well, we’d better stop legislating then, because it’ll all end up in Strasbourg.

    • ScaryBiscuits

      I thought we already had. From HS2 to 80 mph on the motorways, from adoption policies to windmills, not just most of our laws but also most government initiatives these days come out of Europe, with Westminister acting as little more than a relay. Democracy in the EU has become a charade, with governments now in charge of little more than the speed of implementation of what the permanent bureaucracy in Brussels dictates.

  • the viceroy’s gin

    Ahhhhh yes, the Speccie lickspittle hates on UKIP, but come a potential threat to lickspittle livelihood, out comes the evil EU/ECHR boogieman defense, worthy enough to make a UKIPer proud.

    Hypocrisy much?

    • telemachus

      Hear Hear
      The title of this post is one of the most mischievous I have seen on Speccie in a long while.
      Whatever happens Thursday the Chipping Norton angle will not be far away

  • TomTom

    It would not matter if Libel Laws were revoked….they are the real impediment to free press and are an Instrument of Censorship for Fraudsters

Can't find your Web ID? Click here