AbstractThe article analyses the current position of journalists’ criminal responsibility regarding criminal offences perpetrated during their job. The standpoint is taken at the principle of freedom of expression and the bedrock principle of the free press and emphasises the importance of these principles in a democratic society. At the same time the right to privacy is pointed out. A distinction is made between criminal law provisions that by their nature constitute a limitation of freedom of expression and criminal law provisions where this is not the case. Different types of journalistic working methods and conduct are analysed and it is concluded that even though journalists have a special status as public watchdogs – that must be taken into account in every single case – journalists are, in principle, not released from their duty to obey the ordinary criminal law. This is due to the principle of the rule of law and applies in particular if the concrete criminal law provision does not by its nature constitute a limitation of freedom of expression. The analyses have their legal basis in the European Convention on Human Rights and the Court’s case law and will further be illustrated by means of Danish case law.
Copyright (c) 2016 Trine Baumbach
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 International License.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work.