F1 boss Max Mosleys win is dangerous precedent

July 27th, 2008 - 12:52 pm ICT by ANI  

London, July 27 (ANI): The former Archbishop of Canterbury has attacked Max Mosley’’s court win over the News of The World, insisting that the privacy victory has set a dangerous precedent.

Lord Carey said that the High Court judgment awarding the Motorsport boss record damages has undermined public morality.

The UKs biggest-selling newspaper has been forced to pay-out 60,000 pounds in damages after Justice Eady ruled that they did breach Mosley’’s privacy by reporting on a sado-masochistic orgy he had taken part in.

Writing in the News of the World, Lord Carey said free speech has been the “first major victim” and that without public debate or democratic scrutiny, the courts have created a new privacy law.

“A dangerous precedent has been set this week in the victory of Max Mosley over the Press. The first major victim is free speech itself. Without public debate or democratic scrutiny the courts have created a wholly new privacy law. In itself that’’s bad enough, the Daily Express quoted him, as stating in the News of the World.

“But, as a Christian leader, I am deeply sad that public morality is the second victim of this legal judgment. Unspeakable and indecent behaviour, whether in public or in private, is no longer significant under this ruling. And in our celebrity-obsessed age this is a hazardous route to take.

“In the past a public figure has known that scandalous and immoral behaviour carries serious consequences for his or her public profile, reputation and job. Today it is possible to both have your cake and to eat it.

“But a case can be clearly made for a direct link between private behaviour and public conduct. If a politician, a judge, a bishop or any public figure cannot keep their promises to a wife, husband, etc, how can they be trusted to honour pledges to their constituencies and people they serve? he added.

Lord Carey said “most people” would ridicule Mosley’’s claim that what consenting adults do with each other behind closed doors is harmless.

He added that the ruling would “needlessly shackle” the Press and prevent investigations into matters of public interest. (ANI)

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