A juror who discussed his case on Facebook and another who carried out internet research were today found guilty of contempt of court, following action by the Attorney General Dominic Grieve.
Kasim Davey discussed a case he was trying at Wood Green Crown Court on Facebook, saying he always wanted to f*ck up a paedophile and now he was within the law, but denied it when asked by the judge. He was discharged from the jury.
Joseph Beard Googled extra information about the fraud case he was trying at Kingston Crown Court and told members of the jury about it. The trial collapsed and there was a later re-trial.
Today Sir John Thomas and Sir Nigel Sweeney, judges at London’s High Court, today sentenced both Davey and Beard to 2 months imprisonment.
The Attorney said:
Jurors who use the internet to research a case undermine justice. It creates a risk that the defendant will be convicted or acquitted, not on the evidence, but on unchallenged and untested material discovered by the juror.
Equally, the case of Kasim Davey shows that jurors must follow the directions given to them by the trial judge not to discuss the case outside the jury room, including discussions and posts on the internet.
Both jurors were prosecuted under the common law of contempt for carrying out an act likely to interfere with the due administration of justice.