Supreme Court on Reputation, Expression and Anonymity

13 03 2010

In this post Lorna Skinner considers the decision of the Supreme Court in In Re Guardian News & Media in concerning the anonymisation of proceedings and the wider expression issues to which it gives rise.

In the case of Re Guardian News and Media ([2010] UKSC 1) the Supreme Court considered the vexed question of anonymity in court hearings.  Giving the unanimous judgment of a 7 judge bench, Lord Rodger began by quoting the “provocative” words of the applicants’ counsel: “your first term docket reads like alphabet soup” [1].  Lord Rodger pointed out that both the last case heard by the House of Lords (BA (Nigeria) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2009] UKSC 7) and the first case heard by the Supreme Court (In re appeals by Governing Body of JFS [2009] UKSC 1) involved anonymous parties.

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