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This morning Impress bankroller and spanker-in-chief Max Mosley appeared on the Today programme to claim the regulator is “completely independent of me”. Untrue: Mosley has donated £4 million to Impress. It wouldn’t exist without him.
Mosley explained the sinister Section 40 measure:
“If a newspaper refuses to belong to a recognised regulator then of course if it’s taken to court it will end up paying both sides.”
That “recognised regulator” would be Mosley’s own Impress, which due to its public pronouncements ranting bile and invective against newspapers and journalists, no mainstream newspaper will join. Impress and Section 40 would have newspapers bankrupted by corrupt MPs, dodgy traders, and c-list celebs pursuing vexatious cases free-of-charge…
Cheap and accessible out-of-court arbitration is already available through a pilot-scheme run by current regulator IPSO, a key Leveson recommendation implemented. IPSO also has the power to fine newspapers up to £1 million through its parallel complaints and mediation process, force them to print its adjudications and dictate the wording of corrections. Mosley then stoked calls for Leveson II:
“It’s no good pretending a few criminal trials revealed what was really going on, it didn’t.”
By “a few criminal trials” Mosley means jack-booted probe Operation Elveden, the failed crusade against popular newspapers. Elveden coppers dragged 34 innocent journalists from their beds at dawn to the dock without resulting in a single conviction, costing the taxpayer £15 million. Mosley’s Today interview was as honest as his regulator is impartial…