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09 January 2020

MEN Attended Court For A Year Before Publishing Reynhard Sinaga Story

The Manchester Evening News sent a reporter to cover the trials of Manchester student rapist Reynhard Sinaga for more than a year before a story could be published due to reporting restrictions on the case.

The paper revealed that it had declined to challenge the extension of reporting restrictions on the case until sentencing because the fourth trial finished shortly before Christmas, and there were concerns about the availability for counselling services over the holiday period.

Deputy chief crown prosecutor for the North West Ian Rushton says the case would have been “significantly more difficult' to pursue without reporting restrictions in place, the MEN reported.

“Whether we would have been able to ensure a fair trial process I don’t know.”

"Because I suppose the alternative would have been one massive trial that would have lasted an inordinate length of time and been not so easily explained to jurors.

“I think that would have been almost certainly logistically impossible.”

Detective Inspector Zed Ali, who led the investigation into Sinaga, says the restrictions “assisted these brave young men to give evidence in a safe environment.”

He says has “no doubt” some would not have given evidence if there had been press coverage during the trials.