UK & World News
Man Fined For 'Damaging' Ex's Facebook Page
A man has been fined for causing criminal damage to a Facebook account in a landmark legal case.
The 30-year-old man, from Donegal, Ireland, who cannot be named for legal reasons, posted an offensive message on his ex-girlfriend's account.
Rather than being charged under harassment laws, he was prosecuted using the Criminal Damage Act 1991, which has a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and an £8,000 fine.
The man was acquitted by a jury last month of the rape and false imprisonment of his ex-girlfriend in her home on the same date.
The court heard that the man went to the woman's house on April 6, 2011 to confront her over alleged infidelity.
He left the house with her phone, and posted a status update while logged into her Facebook account labelling her a "whore" who would take "any offers".
He was arrested soon after the incident and told police he had been angry when he posted the message.
Defence lawyer Isobel Kennedy SC said his actions were wrong but said he had been drinking beforehand.
Mr Justice Garrett said there was no relevant precedent to guide him when deciding on punishment, and went on to fine the man ?2,000 (£1,595).