Birmingham Mail apologises after photo mix-up

The Birmingham Mail has apologised after incorrectly using a picture of a barrister’s clerk with a story about a man being jailed for benefit fraud.

An apology on the newspaper’s website, headlined: “RAMESH CHAUHAN – correction and apology” on May 17, said: “We wish to offer a full and unreserved apology to Mr Ramesh Chauhan for the report published by BirminghamMail.net between 1 May and 4 May 2010 under the headline ‘Greedy millionaire landlord jailed for fiddling benefits’.

“The report related to Naresh Chauhan, of Walsall, who was convicted and sent to jail for benefit fraud.

“The report was incorrectly illustrated with the photograph of Mr Ramesh Chauhan …

“Mr Ramesh Chauhan is employed as a barristers’ clerk in Birmingham and has no connection with Naresh Chauhan, or with any of the events reported and has no criminal convictions of any kind, and his photograph was used by us wholly in error.

“We offer our sincerest apology to Mr Ramesh Chauhan for any embarrassment and distress caused to him by the wrongful publication of his photograph in connection with this report.”

The apology was accompanied by a photograph of Ramesh Chauhan.

The Birmingham Mail mix-up preceded a similar mistake by the Basildon Echo, which was forced to apologise last week after publishing a photograph of a man it incorrectly claimed had been charged with a sex offence.

In April, the South Wales Evening Post apologised after it incorrectly identified a young man as having admitted engaging in sexual activity with two young girls.

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