A convicted sex offender has won a lawsuit against Facebook and the creator of a page after he sued the company for privacy violations and harassment.
A high court in Belfast recently found Facebook and the operator of a page called “keeping our kids safe from predators 2” page liable for misuse of private information, and doled out £20,000 in damages. It’s thought to be the first ruling of its kind.
The page, which has nearly 13,000 likes, is described as “an informational site to promote awareness”. It posts photos and personal information of convicted sex offenders. The judge in the case has demanded that Facebook take it down.
From The Irish Times:
The plaintiff, identified only as CG, was released from jail in 2012 after serving a sentence for gross indecency and indecent assault offences against a young girl and a teenage boy.
Now aged in his forties, he remains under supervision by the authorities and has been assessed as posing no significant risk to the public.
He claimed harassment, violation of his right to privacy and breaches of the Data Protection Act against Facebook and Mr McCloskey after his photograph and details appeared on the site in 2013.
CG claimed that he received threatening comments due to his identity being revealed on the Facebook page, and that those comments made him fear violence.
The operator of the page pointed out that he does have a disclaimer on the page, saying “please refrain from rude/violent comments … posting such comments could lead to your removal” – but that wasn’t enough to sway the court.
If you’re wondering why the page has a “2” at the end of its name, it’s because the original page was shut down in 2012 after a separate sex offender sued. At the time, the page’s creator clearly stated that he would be opening up “keeping our kids safe from predators 2″.
The page is still up and running as of the publishing of this article.