Tuesday, December 10, 2013


Some time ago, the Times exposed the identity of the police officer who blogged (very successfully) as Nightjack. Many of us were uncomfortable about this, and the question that lodged in my mind was "why?". Nevertheless there arose a climate of uncertainty among bloggers and not everyone fancied taking a chance.

Since then several police bloggers have disappeared from the Interweb, notably the stimulating if often infuriating Inspector Gadget. I can only sympathise; it is all right for the likes of me to irritate the authorities, but this blog doesn't pay my mortgage or feed my kids (if only...).

It turns out that the Times obtained its information in  a dubious  manner (as did so many Murdoch staff at that time) and now the Times lawyer has come to grief with his professional body.

I believe that there is a Chinese aphorism that if you sit beside the river for long enough you will eventually see the bodies of your enemies float by. I am still watching that river.


  1. If he did something like that in an "ordinary" job he would be dismissed for gross misconduct with no references for future employer. However, as he is "in a position of trust" he is only suspended ...

  2. It's not only these guys. Teachers are having details of their Facebook pages used to haul them over the coals for innocuous (man-in-street) - interpreted as defamatory (by head) - remarks

    1. Never a good idea to slag off your head of dept in public, be that on Facebook or elsewhere.
      From Me 2 EU

  3. Most sources describe the proverb about seeing the bodies of one's enemies floating by as Japanese, but it's a good one whichever its origin.
    Whose bodies would you most like to see floating by?!
    Kate Caveat

  4. Both these blogs were a very good thing. They gave a very helpful insight into the challenges and prolems in the crimminal justice system and helped the public to understand the problems the police have and the shades of grey that they work with. Overall, they were benfical to society. I used to read nightscape and gadget. I didnt agree with much of what gadget said but but could see where he was coming from. Whilst this ban is a good thing, six months is far too short. A two yar ban would cease his employment, mark the offence clearly as a deterrant and be a suitable punishment.

  5. There is a growing jurisprudence of Employment Law cases dealing with social media issues where staff have been disciplined or sacked for things said on Twitter/Facebook etc. Will be interesting to see where all this leads...

  6. Seems to me this chap has got off lightly. Effectively he was conspiring to pervet the course of justice if the 'knowingly ' allowed the case to be put in a way he 'knew' was a lie.
    This sort of behaviour has to be dealt with robustly, however the SRA seem to have effectively slapped his wrist when what he really needed was a kichk in the teeth.

  7. Here's hoping they get Tom Crone as well (who is completely innocent until a jury says otherwise...)

  8. It always amazes me to se epraise of those who take on obligations of confidentiality in relation to their work and then knowlingly and deliberately break them (whether for gain or otherwise). If you have entered into such an obligation, then ignoring it is breach of contract; it is misconduct. It deserves to be severely dealt with. As Lord Denning didn't quite say, such a man should not be congratulated, he should be prosecuted.


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