Nadine Dorries MP “Disappointed” by Ian Puddick Harassment Case Outcome, Boasts that Police “Monitor” Blogs that Criticise Her

From the Guardian:

A man has been cleared of harassing his wife’s millionaire lover on the internet in “a victory for free speech and the small man”.

Plumber Ian Puddick tweeted, blogged and posted videos online after being enraged by his wife Leena’s 10-year affair with Timothy Haynes, a City director.

…Puddick, of Enfield, north London, claimed he decided to expose the relationship after finding out Haynes was using company expenses to fund the affair, taking his wife to “wonderful places around the country”.

He described his shock when his home was later raided by anti-terror police at 6am, with officers removing phones, computers and even his satnavs.

Further details were given in an earlier report. Haynes’ company, Guy Carpenter, employed the private security firm  Kroll and liaised with police (link added):

Michael Wolkind QC, representing Puddick, said his client intended to defend his actions. “This case is about Mr Puddick’s right to express his feelings about another person’s immorality. Ian Puddick dared to speak out about his wife’s affair and it has cost the public £1m for the extraordinary investigation carried out by an unusually enthusiastic police alongside an elite security firm.”

I haven’t looked into Puddick’s case in depth – it is possible that his pursuit of Haynes went beyond what Haynes could reasonably have been expected to take on the chin, but the use of anti-terror police to make life easier for a millionaire businessman at a cost of £1 million leaves an unsavoury impression. Puddick has a website here.

One person who disagrees with Wolkind – and with the judge who found Puddick innocent – is Nadine Dorries MP. According to a blog entry posted last night (and deleted this morning):

I am very disappointed with the judge’s finding following a three day trial of a case brought to court for on line harassment… I had really hoped for a different outcome today.

The reason for Dorries wished for “a different outcome” is because she believes that, despite being a public figure who is paid from the public purse, her political activities – and, crucially, her expenses – should not be subjected to hostile scrutiny. To this end, she employs false accusations of harassment to discourage critics, and boasts that the police do her bidding:

One of the especially ‘poorly’ compulsive obsessive’s [sic], recently alarmed the Police enough for them to issue a verbal warning on tape following a five hour interview. Following the warning, his tweets and blogs have remain monitored, as are those of people he communicates with on a regular basis in which I am discussed or mentioned.

This is an obvious reference to Tim Ireland; as I blogged here, Dorries objected to Tim’s presence at a hustings event in 2010, and the police advised Tim that further attendance at events involving Dorries could therefore be “construed” as stalking. Dorries has sought to portray this as as some sort of police acknowledgement of wrongdoing; milking it further, she now implies that the police consider his blog and others (including, surely, this one) to be a matter of police concern. Either she’s making it up, or we’re looking at more abuse of power.

There’s also a second reason why Dorries may have sympathy with Haynes: back in December, a married man left his wife to become her lover (this was a several months before Dorries began her campaign for “abstinence education”). Dorries did not appreciate her lover’s wife complaining to the Daily Mail, and took revenge.

If anyone wants to see what on-line harassment really looks like, I outline some genuine examples herehere, and here.

(H/T to Jules Lewis)

UPDATE: Sim-O has more.

UPDATE 2: More today.