Jill Meagher accused gets internet order


A Melbourne court has ruled that potentially prejudicial material in the case against the alleged murderer of Irish woman Jill Meagher should be removed from the internet.

Deputy chief magistrate Felicity Broughton yesterday ordered the removal of damaging material relating to Adrian Ernest Bayley (41), who is accused of the rape and murder of Ms Meagher. The decision came after legal aid lawyers acting for Mr Bayley applied for suppression orders preventing the publication of any prejudicial material and photographs of him. Ms Broughton decided against banning the publication of Mr Bayley’s images as it was not clear that identity was an issue in the case. The defence presented a large amount of material from Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to the court, which it said incited hatred and vilification.

Ms Broughton said while the unregulated environment of the internet might mean any ban was futile, the courts had a duty to try to protect the criminal justice process. Mr Bayley appeared by video link from prison for the hearing.