The High Court is unable to agree on Twitter Joke Trial appeal

A fresh appeal hearing is ordered before three appeal judges as the case goes on.

The two-judge Divisional Court of the High Court has not been able to come to an agreed decision on the “Twitter Joke Trial” appeal and so has ordered a new hearing before three judges.

On 8 February Lord Justice Gross and Mr Justice Irwin heard the appeal by case stated of Paul Chambers against his conviction by Doncaster Magistrates’ Court under section 127(1) of the Communications Act for sending a “menacing” communication.  The message in question was a tweet expressing Chambers’ jokey exasperation at Robin Hood Airport being closed.  

There is no new date set yet for the hearing.  A split divisional court is exceptional, and it appears that this may be only the second time it has happened this century.

Prominent supporters of the campaign in support of Chambers include Stephen Fry, Graham Linehan, and Al Murray.  There is a support fund for legal fees of barristers and the many other expenses of Chambers in fighting the case.

 

David Allen Green is the New Statesman’s legal correspondent and is acting for Paul Chambers in the appeal.  His legal work for Paul Chambers is being funded separately from the support fund.

The Royal Courts of Justice. Photo: Getty Images

David Allen Green is legal correspondent of the New Statesman and author of the Jack of Kent blog.

His legal journalism has included popularising the Simon Singh libel case and discrediting the Julian Assange myths about his extradition case.  His uncovering of the Nightjack email hack by the Times was described as "masterly analysis" by Lord Justice Leveson.

David is also a solicitor and was successful in the "Twitterjoketrial" appeal at the High Court.

(Nothing on this blog constitutes legal advice.)

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SRSLY #45: Love, Nina, Internet Histories Week, The Secret in Their Eyes

This week on the pop culture podcast, we chat Nick Hornby’s adaptation of Nina Stibbe’s literary memoir, our histories on the internet, and an Oscar-winning 2009 Argentinian thriller.

This is SRSLY, the pop culture podcast from the New Statesman. Here, you can find links to all the things we talk about in the show as well as a bit more detail about who we are and where else you can find us online.

...or subscribe in iTunes. We’re also on StitcherRSS and SoundCloud – but if you use a podcast app that we’re not appearing in, let us know.

SRSLY is hosted by Caroline Crampton and Anna Leszkiewicz, the NS’s web editor and editorial assistant. We’re on Twitter as @c_crampton and @annaleszkie, where between us we post a heady mixture of Serious Journalism, excellent gifs and regularly ask questions J K Rowling needs to answer.

The Links

Love, Nina

The first episode on iPlayer.

An interview with Nina Stibbe about the book.

Internet Histories Week

The index of all the posts in the series.

Our conversation about MSN Messenger.

The Secret in Their Eyes

The trailer.

For next week

Anna is watching 30 Rock.

If you’d like to talk to us about the podcast or make a suggestion for something we should read or cover, you can email srslypod[at]gmail.com.

You can also find us on Twitter @srslypod, or send us your thoughts on tumblr here. If you like the podcast, we’d love you to leave a review on iTunes - this helps other people come across it.

We love reading out your emails. If you have thoughts you want to share on anything we’ve discussed, or questions you want to ask us, please email us on srslypod[at]gmail.com, or @ us on Twitter @srslypod, or get in touch via tumblr here. We also have Facebook now.

Our theme music is “Guatemala - Panama March” (by Heftone Banjo Orchestra), licensed under Creative Commons. 

See you next week!

PS If you missed #44, check it out here.