20 Dec BBC DEFENDS SIR CLIFF RICHARD CASE
The BBC has defended the claim brought against it for invasion of privacy and breach of data protection obligations. Sir Cliff is suing both the BBC and South Yorkshire Police over a police search of his home which was televised by the BBC in August 2014, including using footage from a helicopter over the property. The police action related to historical sexual assault allegations which Sir Cliff always denied; the investigation has since been discontinued and the Crown Prosecution Service confirmed in June that Sir Cliff will face no further action. The BBC has apologised for the distress which it accepted had been caused to Sir Cliff but stood by its coverage. The BBC has defended the coverage as being in the public interest, saying there was a strong public interest in reporting criminal investigations into prominent figures such as Sir Cliff. The BBC also stated that it reported Sir Cliff’s denials throughout. The BBC’s defence denies that Sir Cliff is entitled to any damages or compensation. zoom-in will report further on this case as it continues.