Boost for Privacy

Individuals under investigation by law enforcement bodies have a reasonable expectation of privacy up to the point they are charged, the Court of Appeal has confirmed. Dismissing an appeal by a news agency barred from revealing the identity of a US businessman identified in documents concerning a bribery probe, the court ruled that the fact that an individual is the subject of a criminal investigation is genuinely of a different character from allegations about the conduct being investigated.

Simon LJ added that to be suspected of a crime is damaging whatever the nature of the crime: \’It is sensitive personal information and there can be little justification for a hierarchy of offences giving rise to suspicion; although I would accept that there may be some cases where the reasonable expectation of privacy may be significantly reduced, perhaps even to extinction, due to the public nature of the activity.\’

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