Trial by Twitter: No further action

Trial by Twitter: No further action

A police force which named and shamed motorists charged with drink-driving on Twitter face no further action, a watchdog has said.

The Information Commissioner's Office said Staffordshire Police has given reassurances that it will hot be re-using the controversial hashtag #DrinkDriversNamedOnTwitter which it employed over Christmas and the New Year.

The office said it was concerned that the tweets named people who have only been charged alongside the tag "drink-driver", which strongly suggests an assumption of guilt.

Driving legal specialist Nick "Mr Loophole" Freeman meanwhile urged named drivers to sue.

He is advising them to make a formal complaint to the Chief Constable. They can then consider taking a civil action against the police force involved for any relevant damages, he added.

The lawyer called the police Twitter campaign "trial by social media".

Mr Freeman said he totally backs naming and shaming offenders - but only after conviction. He said: "In our legal system a police officer is not the arbiter of guilt or innocence."

Staffordshire Police refused to comment.

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