Ipswich arrest #1 - what a cock-up

It's very rare that I get annoyed with my fellow journos, but I am incredibly angry with the behaviour of the BBC over the arrest of a 37-year-old man - apparently an ex-special constable and team leader at Ipswich Tescos.

I am, of course, referring to the tragic case of the five murdered sex workers in Ipswich and the arrest of the first suspect on Monday morning.

Judging from what has transpired, I've concluded that this man is quite bright and has played the media for a patsy.

He may be guilty of the murders, but the media frenzy in releasing his details, including information from the MySpace Web portal - which has since been deleted - means that a fair trial is almost impossible.

Assuming, of course, the first arrestee is charged with anything.

If he is released, then it's a dead cert he'll be (a) suing the arse off several media organisations and (b) selling his story to the News of the Screws and similar papers that we all love to read, even though we don't admit to it.

And he will be quite within his rights to do so, as his rights under British law to a fair trial and the principle of innocent until proven guilty, seem to have been ignored here.

The fact that the arrestee may have manupulated the media into this situation makes it all the worse.

I can only hope for the media's sake that he is charged and found to be guilty, as what has happened is a classic case of trial by media, exposing the worst side of the law, the media and the Internet age we live in...