Judge in Birmingham murder trial stopped BBC riots doc

It emerged this afternoon that the BBC two-part documentary The Riots: In their own words was prevented from broadcast by the trial judge in the case of eight men charged with murder during last year's disturbances.

The eight were today cleared of murdering three young men who died when they were run over as they sought to protect a mosque in Birmingham during rioting on the night of 10 August last year.

The two BBC documentaries, due to be broadcast on Monday and Wednesday night, were based on real testimony from those involved in last year's riots across England gathered by The Guardian and the London School of Economics.

According to The Guardian's Paul Lewis, the highly unusual order was made under section 45 of the Senior Courts Act 1981.

Although the films made no reference to the Birmingham incident, the judge believed that because the films touched on issues related to his case, they could affect jurors.

The judge issued his order on Monday after being alerted to the films by a defence barrister.

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