Sunday 4 December 2016

Man jailed after filming 'no filming' sign in court

Published 23/09/2015 | 21:37

Judge's gavel.
Judge's gavel.

A man who used his mobile phone to film crown court proceedings, including a sign warning the public that filming is forbidden, has been jailed, police have said.

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Jack Towes, 21, of Hunwick Close, Middlesbrough, was sentenced to three months in jail after pleading guilty to contempt of court at Minshull Street Crown Court in Manchester.

He was watching a family member's hearing and was seen by a court usher to use his mobile phone to take still images and video footage of the courtroom and trial from the public gallery, Greater Manchester Police said.

He was arrested at the scene and initially attempted to deny the phone was his, before eventually accepting guilt.

Court Officer Constable John Ennis, said: "Unfortunately cases such as this are becoming more and more commonplace.

"Towes cannot even plead ignorance in this case, as part of the video footage taken on his phone involves him pointing the camera at the sign which explicitly forbids cameras and recording equipment in the court building.

"He showed complete disregard for these laws, flouting them openly and flagrantly in front of staff members.

"I hope that this sentence sets an example for others, and that in future people will think twice about using their mobile phones to record or photograph court proceedings."

Press Association

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