Naming rape victim 'low point' for editor

A NEWSPAPER editor has told a Hobart court the lowest point in his 35-year career came when his newspaper named a complainant in a rape case for the second time in a year.

Andrew Holman took over as editor of Hobart's Mercury after the newspaper published the name and a photograph of a rape victim in January.

Yesterday the Supreme Court heard that after those proceedings began, Mr Holman undertook to improve staff training on their legal obligations.

Mr Holman and the publisher of the Mercury, Davies Brothers Ltd, are being prosecuted for contempt of court in relation to a second complainant being named in July.

He said he had offered to resign after the story was published.

Mr Holman told the court six people were involved in the second publication, and that four of those people received first and final warnings.

Mr Holman was in Melbourne for meetings when the article was published and did not read it before publication.

Director of Public Prosecutions Tim Ellis, SC, said there was a "culture of absolute indifference in obeying the law" at the Mercury, also citing a defamation case and action being brought in relation to a breach of the Electoral Act.

Justice Peter Evans has reserved his decision.

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