EDP wins the right to shame teenage pests

One month after being banned from naming two teenage girls who breached anti-social behaviour orders, The Eastern Daily Press has now won the right, from the same court, to name them after a second breach.

The girls, who had plagued central Yarmouth, were originally named in June when the ASBOs were imposed on them.

But the paper was denied the right to do so when they breached an original order last month.

Senior reporter Emily Dennis and Ed Nash, reporter at the EDP’s sister title, The Great Yarmouth Mercury, argued that the girls’ identities had already been made public and should not be hidden.

They further argued that publicity generated by the court case was a key factor in the tackling of anti-social behaviour.

After a lengthy debate, it was decided that the public interest outweighed the girls’ right to privacy.

The teenagers, who were banned from seeing each other after shoplifting, robbing and swearing at staff, were spotted together by a police officer and, said defence solicitor Gareth James, by members of the public and were therefore given community punishment orders.

Emily Dennis said: “Naming youths after they have breached ASBOs seems to be a bit of a grey area with magistrates and it is always a bit of a gamble whether you are going to win or not.

Magistrates should not treat breaches of orders any differently to when the ASBO is imposed.”

By Sarah Lagan

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