In the Media

Race abuse ruled legal as long as the victim doesn't hear

PUBLISHED June 24, 2005

People who use offensive epithets such as "wog", "pakis" or "black bastard" are not breaking the law, as long as no one from an ethnic minority hears them, according to a High Court ruling yesterday.

The decision followed an unsuccessful attempt by the Director of Public Prosecutions to overturn a verdict in which magistrates in Leicestershire cleared a constituent who left a series of messages on his MP's answerphone.