Contempt of court has been aptly described as the Proteus of the legal world, assuming an almost infinite diversity of forms. Its central concern is to protect the administration of justice in criminal and civil cases, addressing, for example, the perennial conflict between the requirements of a fair and unprejudiced trial and those from freedom of expression. It is also concerned to protect witnesses from being victimized and courts from being subjected to
destructive criticism in the press, or disruptive conduct during their proceedings. Similarly, it provides the ultimate sanction to secure the enforcement of court orders. A further major clash of interests is between the demands of 'open justice' and the numerous restrictions on reporting which now
exist, for example to confer anonymity on children and on complainants in sexual cases and on other vulnerable witnesses. These are discussed in detail, particularly in the light of the changes associated with the Youth Justice and Criminal Evidence Act 1999.
This new and considerably expanded version of Professor Miller's classic work on the subject has been written against the background of the Human Rights Act 1998 and the ever-increasing importance of the European Convention of Human Rights. The compatibility (or otherwise) of existing law with 'Convention rights' is discussed in detail in the light of the decisions of the European Court of Human Rights, many of which are not as inimical to the values traditionally advanced by the law of
contempt as is sometimes assumed. Full discussion of the many changes in English law is accompanied by references to developments in such jurisdictions as Australia, New Zealand, Canada and, to a lesser extent, the United States of America. In particular the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms has
long since required Canadian courts to grapple with issues which are now confronting their United Kingdom counterparts. It is to be expected that such developments will increasingly be taken into account when reassessing our own law of contempt.
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Number of pages: 880
Weight: 1584 g
Dimensions: 254 x 178 x 49 mm
Edition: 3rd Revised edition
The new edition continues the work's clear writing and thorough coverage. Its consideration of Australian, New Zealand and Canadian law has increased, even though it was a notable feature of earlier editions. The work should be a valuable book for any specialist contempt lawyers in these jurisdictions. ... a major work of traditional legal scholarship in the general field of media law. * Media and Arts Law Review, Sept. 2001 *
Practitioners and researchers alike will find it useful in the new milieu ... the book remains one of the most authoritative treatises on the subject. * Commonwealth Lawyer, April 2001 *
Scholarly and thoughtful text, skilfully drawing on diverse sources both from other common law jurisdictions and from other areas of law ... important and indispensable work of the highest merit and which no media lawyer can afford to be without. * N. V. Lowe, Tolley's Communications Law *
Comprehensive and valuable book * Tom Welsh, Media Lawyer Sept/Oct 2000 *