|Chiswick Web Designer May Face Jail Over Paedophile Slur|
Set up bogus web site in client’s name after dispute over payment
A Chiswick based web designer could face time in prison after setting up a web site on which he published a false admission by a local surveyor that he was a paedophile.
Paul Britton, who is the managing director of Origin Design based in Turnham Green Terrace Mews, got into a dispute with Ian Phipps over payment for web design work.
At a trial at Kingston Crown Court this week, it was heard that Mr. Britton had set up a web site in 2012 called ianphipps.co.uk which included a picture of Mr. Phipps and the words ‘I am a paedophile.”
Mr. Britton had been suing Mr. Phipps for £150 for non-payment. The latter had refused to pay because he deemed the work to be unsatisfactory. The case was dropped after Mr. Phipps learnt about the web site in his name and Mr . Britton was arrested on suspicion of harassment. Mr. Britton initially denied two charges but subsequently pleaded guilty to one charge relating to harassment.
According to the Evening Standard, Mr Britton’s barrister claimed that the impact on Mr. Phipps’ reputation was minimal because the site did not rank highly enough on search engines for people to discover it.
Judge Durran replied that the question of the visibility of the site was key because, if the site was visible to anyone, it would put the case ‘into the threshold of custody’. He then adjourned the case to allow for the compilation of reports by internet experts to determine exactly how visible the site would have been.
Sentencing is due to take place in January.
November 21, 2014