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Juror who 'contacted defendant on Facebook' faces contempt charges

Juror accused of contempt

A female juror in a high profile drugs trial will appear in court this week, charged with contempt, after allegedly contacting the accused through Facebook.

Joanne Fraill is said to have contacted defendant Jamie Stewart using the social networking site during the trial in Manchester last year, causing it to collapse.

Ms Stewart had been acquitted as a result, but also faces charges of contempt of court on Tuesday.

The trial was one of many connected to the same case, which are believed to have cost the UK taxpayer up to £6 million.

Juror misconduct

The case will be heard by Lord Judge, the Lord Chief Justice, says The Guardian, and will coincide with the appeal of a convicted defendant who claims that the alleged juror misconduct means his conviction should also be thrown out.

The charges are the second time that social networking sites have made big news in court this year following a landmark ruling allowing journalists to use Twitter in court.

Source: Guardian