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Tuesday 15 October 2019

Shameless star Malone avoids jail over child killer ID

Actress Tina Malone shared Facebook post on Jon Venables
Actress Tina Malone shared Facebook post on Jon Venables

Actress Tina Malone has avoided jail after she admitted breaching an injunction protecting the identity of James Bulger's killer Jon Venables by sharing a post on social media.

The UK's High Court heard she shared a post on Facebook in February last year which purportedly included an image and the new name of Venables.

She was handed an eight-month suspended sentence by Lord Chief Justice Lord Burnett.

The court heard she was suffering from mental health problems when she shared the post and that she is the main carer for her five-year-old daughter and elderly mother.

Contempt

"We have concluded that, although the custody threshold is undoubtedly passed in this case, the personal circumstances and mitigation of this defendant are such that we should impose a suspended committal order," said Lord Burnett.

"Taking account of everything we have heard, we order the defendant be committed to prison for eight months, but we suspend that order for two years."

The judge said that, if Malone committed another contempt of court within two years, she would be jailed for eight months plus any additional sentence she might be given.

Malone's barrister, Adam Speker, told the court that on reflection after giving evidence, the 56-year-old accepted she was in breach of the injunction.

The Shameless star told the court she was not aware she was doing anything wrong when she shared the post.

A court order was made "against the world" in 2001, banning the publication of any-thing that purports to reveal the identities of Venables and Robert Thompson.

They have been living with new identities since being released from a life sentence for the kidnap, torture and murder of James Bulger in Liverpool 1993, when they were aged 10.

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