'Great journalism': How Leveson praised our Lawrence campaign
00:16 GMT, 30 November 2012
Murdered: The Mail's campaign to bring the killers of Stephen Lawrence to justice was singled out for praise
The Daily Mail’s campaign to bring the killers of Stephen Lawrence to justice was singled out in the Leveson report as an example of ‘great journalism’ in the British Press.
Under the headline ‘Murderers’, in 1997 the newspaper devoted the front page to an article naming the five men accused of killing the 18 year old student A-level student.
As a result of the Mail’s campaign, two
of the five were earlier this year found guilty of the racist killing in
South East London in 1993.
Lord Justice Leveson said the campaign was ‘fraught with obvious risk (legal risk being only one potential concern).’
But he said it must be emphasised that
Mail editor Paul Dacre’s judgment ‘had been entirely vindicated by
subsequent events, namely the setting up of an inquiry under the
chairmanship of Sir William Macpherson (along with its conclusions), the
conviction of two men and the maintenance of public awareness of the
case and its important ramifications.’
Lord Justice Leveson also detailed the
Mail’s fight to help the Omagh families win justice against the Real IRA
bombers and its campaign to win proper financial compensation for
He also recorded the 16million raised by
Mail readers following the tsunami in 2004 and successful campaigns for
Dignity for the Elderly, Osteoporosis, Alzheimer’s and Prostate Cancer
The judge described them as examples of campaigns which the newspaper has pursued ‘with enormous vigour over the years, in each case in the public interest and with ultimate vindication’.
The report mentioned that the 16million raised following the Boxing Day tsunami was a ‘world record for newspapers’, some of which helped rebuild a large school for children of the poor in Sri Lanka.
ERRORS OF JUDGEMENT
Lord Justice Leveson's reports says: 'The Independent was founded in 1986 by the journalists Andreas Whittam Smith, Stephen Glover and Brett Straub.' In fact, Straub is a made-up character whose name was added to the newspaper's Wikipedia profile by pranksters. It appears to have been cut and pasted from the web without any checking.
Colin Port, Chief Constable of Avon and Somerset, was described by Leveson as 'retired'. He remains in post – prompting an embarrassing correction later yesterday.
Leveson observes that 'while it may be correct that some people in the public eye trade on their wholesome image or status as a family man, that is not the case with [Steve] Coogan. Given the actor's decidedly unwholesome association with hard drugs and lap-dancers, was that ever an option for Coogan