17th July 1915
Jersey Evening Post editor is tried for publishing secrets
The Jersey Royal Court sat on a Saturday to hear a case against WE Guiton, both owner and editor of the Jersey Evening Post. Guiton’s counsel didn’t put up any defence, admitting that his client had published a paragraph contravening paragraph 18 of the Defence of the Realm Regulations at a time when Britain was at war.
However, he pointed out that Guiton was a good, loyal man, who had always previously done what was required of him and promised that there would be no recurrence.
The paragraph in question had appeared in the issue published eleven days previously which, under the heading The Mail Boats, had reported on the movements of a machine gun detachment from the 4th Battalion South Staffordshire Regiment to join the Expeditionary Forces. Previously, the paper had published information about other movements, the positions of guiding lights, and actions taken against U-boats in waters surrounding the island among other sensitive matters.
Despite evidence that this was not an isolated incident, the court considered the undertakings it had heard from Guiton’s advocate to be adequate surety. However, forced to impose a penalty of some sort, it considered that a fine of £1 would suffice.
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