Unclear on the concept

BBC News – Man fined for Bebo friend request

Barry Gillies, 25, admitted sending the request to Sally Ann Gray the day after a special bail condition had forbid him from approaching her.

He also admitted sending an e-mail to Miss Gray.

Solicitor Paul Ralph said: “I suppose it means there wasn’t any face-to-face contact.

“He seems to have learned his lesson about what the bail conditions mean.

“He now knows how he has to conduct himself if the relationship is to continue.”

[boldface added]

I’m not sure this solicitor is Gillies’s best advocate. If your client had been arrested for stalking a woman and immediately violated the no-contact order in his release from custody, would you talk about how he intends for the relationship to continue?

Of course, the Beeb deserves a slap too: he’s not being fined for a friend request, he’s being fined for violating a no-contact order. It’s like putting a headline “Man Arrested for Greeting” on a story about someone going up to a witness in their upcoming criminal trial and saying, “Hi. I know where you live.”

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