Wednesday, August 4News For London

Jeremy Hunt provokes backlash over manslaughter trial tweet

Controversial tweet lands Jeremy Hunt in hot water - Photo by Ted Eytan / CC BY
Controversial tweet lands Jeremy Hunt in hot water – Photo by Ted Eytan / CC BY

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has been ordered to remove a two-week old tweet relating to a manslaughter trial by a high-profile judge, who deemed it “highly inappropriate”.

The tweet in question was related to the trial of an NHS trust and an anaesthetist, following the death of schoolteacher Frances Cappuccini, during a postnatal operation in October 2012.

Although the original tweet has since disappeared, it is alleged Mr Hunt tweeted that “lessons must be learned” from the incident.

Having been posted on the second day of an ongoing trial, Mr Hunt’s tweet had the potential to prejudice the jury in the case, according to Mr Justice Coulson, and as a result, could classify as contempt of court.

In court cases such as this, the jury are strictly forbidden from reading media reports or any other literature related to the trial they are involved in, when they are sworn in.

The story about Mr Hunt’s tweet has only been made possible to report, given that the trial has just collapsed in court, earlier this week.