Trial juror not punished for Facebook postings

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The Independent Online

A juror who faced jail after posting details of a trial on Facebook has escaped court action. The woman was thrown off a jury presiding over a child abduction and sex assault trial last month after it emerged that she was posting details of the case on the social networking site.

She asked her friends on Facebook to vote whether the defendants were guilty of attacking two girls in Darwen, Lancashire. It was believed the woman did not use privacy settings on her profile, so her postings could be read by anyone.

"I don't know which way to go, so I'm holding a poll," she wrote. In the interests of a fair trial, jurors are forbidden from discussing details of cases, even with their families.

Judge Heather Lloyd dismissed the juror from Burnley Crown Court after an official received an anonymous tip-off. At the request of the judge and the Court Service, the woman was investigated for possible contempt of court by the Attorney-General's office. Yesterday, a spokesman said no action would be taken against her. Farooq Ahmed, 27, Hardeep Singh, 32, and Nelson Caldeiro-Claudino, 26, were found not guilty of child abduction.

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