Privacy laws in chaos as MP names Ryan Giggs

Steve Dinneen
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UK PRIVACY laws lay in tatters yesterday after an MP used his parliamentary privilege to name Ryan Giggs as the player at the centre of a super-injunction row.

John Hemming – the same Lib Dem MP who named Fred Goodwin as the banker with a super-injunction – said “with about 75,000 people having named Ryan Giggs on Twitter it is obviously impracticable to imprison them all.” The MP for Birmingham Yardley also named Giles Coren as the journalist facing prosecution for breaking an injunction on Twitter.

House speaker John Bercow reprimanded Hemming, saying: “Occasions such as this are occasions for raising the issues of principle involved, not seeking to flout for whatever purpose.”

The events will be seen as a slap in the face for the judiciary, who only hours earlier rejected an appeal to overturn the injunction. After a second appeal last night, also rejected, Justice Tugendhat said he was aware that the injunction had been broken on sites including Twitter but said that was no reason to scrap it entirely.

Several MPs have criticised Hemming for abusing his parliamentary privilege to break the injunction.

But David Cameron appeared to side with the media on the issue, saying before the injunction was broken that it was “unfair” that the British press should be banned from reporting on issues that are being openly discussed elsewhere. He said: “The danger is that judgments are effectively writing a new law.”