Facebook refuses to take down Jill Meagher-related pages – police

1 Oct 2012

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Jill Meagher. Photo via Facebook

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Social networking giant Facebook has refused a request by police in the Australian state of Victoria to take down pages which contain content that may taint a fair trial in the case of murdered Irishwoman Jill Meagher.

Victoria Police asked Facebook to take down about six pages over the weekend, but the company did not comply, Sky News Australia reported Deputy Commissioner Tim Cartwright as having said.

Victoria Police chief commissioner Ken Lay said police are now working their way through what they can do next.

Facebook said it was working with police and was committed to acting quickly to remove or restrict content if it violated the company’s policies or the law.

Several Facebook pages sprang up to help find the 29-year-old from Drogheda, Co Louth, after she disappeared on 22 September while walking home after a night out with work colleagues in the Melbourne suburb of Brunswick.

Late last week, police charged 41-year-old Adrian Ernest Bayley with rape and murder after Meagher’s body was found some 50 kilometres from Melbourne.

On Friday, police in the Australian state of Victoria had asked the public to refrain from discussing or posting comments about the Meagher case on social media so as not to prejudice a potential jury.

A funeral for Meagher will take place in Melbourne on Friday, to be followed by cremation. Her parents will then take her ashes to Perth, Australia, where they live.

Tina held senior editorial positions at daily newspapers in Ottawa and Toronto

editorial@siliconrepublic.com