Channel 4 to axe `outdated' criminal justice show
Friday 16 July 1999
The Trial and Error team, headed by campaigner David Jessel, will air one of its final investigations on 26July - into the conviction of Sion Jenkins of the murder of his foster daughter Billy-Jo. The case made headlines last year after 13-year-old Billy-Jo was killed by a metal spike in the garden of her Hastings home. Explaining the programme decision, a Channel 4 spokesman said: "The point about Channel 4 is that you move forward, and have to keep reinventing yourself." He said that the methods of Trial and Error, including in-depth examination of forensic evidence, will still be used to uncover miscarriages of justice. These will appear within the Channel's Dispatches strand, and will be presented by Jessel. The spokesman added that, while the arrangement for two or three Trial and Error programmes a year is to end, there may still be occasional individual investigations using the programme's title and format.
Just Television, the company which makes Trial and Error, has received a second blow. Channel 4 has decided not to renew its contract to provide an in-house investigation team for Dispatches. The contract expires in September.
"It seems that Channel 4 was no longer prepared to put up the money for a strong inside investigative unit, and wants to take one-off bids from independents instead," television executives said. Insiders at the BBC said the Jessel team, which used to produce the BBC's rival programme Rough Justice, left the corporation in 1992, protesting that the BBC had not offered them sufficient commitment.
"If Trial and Error is to go, while Rough Justice still survives, then perhaps that shows that the Jessel team should have stayed in the BBC all along," said one Corporation executive. Jessel said yesterday: "Channel 4 has always stood by us and sponsored investigative journalism and I'm sure the commitment is going to continue."
Trial and Error has taken up 15 cases during its six-year run at Channel 4.
- 2 Katie Hopkins attacked me on Twitter — so I reported her to the police for inciting racial hatred
- 3 Gamers confess the worst things they've done in The Sims
- 4 6-year-old writes ice cold Valentine's card to his stepmother
- 5 Syrian child photographed 'surrendering to camera because she thought it was a gun'
Rape threats, death threats and a police investigation after video poking fun at an Islamic Party in Malaysia goes viral
Why Robin Williams safeguarded himself against a morbid trend in advertising
Ohio Democrat Teresa Fedor speaks out during abortion debate to reveal she has been raped – and is interrupted by laughter from Republicans
Jeremy Clarkson to become 'special adviser on transport' to David Cameron
Exploding head syndrome: One-fifth of US college students suffer from ailment, study finds
Katie Hopkins attacked me on Twitter — so I reported her to the police for inciting racial hatred
Street preacher quoting from the Bible fined for calling homosexuality an 'abomination'
Woman filmed launching racist tirade against men on the Tube for speaking in 'own lingo'
David Cameron calls Labour 'hopeless, sneering socialists' while announcing 7-day NHS plans
Revealed: Putin's army of pro-Kremlin bloggers
Katie Hopkins reported to the police for race hatred by Labour MP Simon Danczuk after tweet about Pakistani men
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This leading provider of financial software so...
£14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a security software com...
£10000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This provider of staffing and r...
£19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the four inns of Court is seeking...