The BBC cannot appeal Sir Cliff Richard’s invasion of privacy verdict, the Guardian reported.
In mid-July, UK Justice Mann ordered the BBC to pay Richard £210,000 for reporting live on a police raid at his house related to his being investigated for a child sex assault claim, as iMediaEthics reported at the time. The judge said the BBC violated Richard’s privacy “without a legal justification” and “in a somewhat sensationalist way.”
The £210,000 payment only addresses general damages, and the BBC may have to pay even more for any financial losses Richard had as a result of the reporting. The BBC said it was planning to appeal, calling the ruling “a dramatic shift against press freedom.”
But, already that attempt to appeal has been squashed. Justice Mann said he didn’t think the appeal would be successful so the appeal attempt was rejected, the Guardian reported.
iMediaEthics contacted the BBC to ask about its failed attempt to appeal. We received the following statement from a BBC spokesperson, which repeated the BBC apology to Richard but expressed concern about press freedom.
“This is a complex case and while we hadn’t decided on whether to pursue an appeal, we sought permission today in order to keep all options open,” the statement said. “We reiterate that we are very sorry to Sir Cliff for the distress caused and have no desire to prolong this case unnecessarily, but the ruling has raised significant questions for press freedom and we are considering the best way to address these.”
The BBC will also pay Richard’s £850,000 legal costs, the Times of London reported.