Correspondence With The BBC
Re Convicted Murderess Linda Carty


The correspondence below has been reprinted verbatim, typograpical errors and inadequate punctuation included! Below the first dotted line is my E-Mail letter of complaint to the BBC; below the second dotted line is their (quite vacuous) response.

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93c Venner Road,
Sydenham,
London SE26 5HU.
0208 659 7713

February 27, 2010

Dear Sir,

The BBC - as well as other media - has recently given sympathetic though completely distorted coverage to the case of Linda Carty who who is currently on Death Row in the United States.

Leaving aside the rights or wrongs of the death penalty, these reports give the impression this woman is where she is because a) she was framed and b) her lawyer was incompetent.

I remembered this case and a brief Google search rewarded me with this appeal judgment

http://www.ca5.uscourts.gov/opinions%5Cpub%5C08/08-70049-CV0.wpd.pdf

which paints an entirely different, and undoubtedly more accurate picture of her case.

Leaving aside the fact that this woman's connections to the UK are tenuous in the extreme, one of the reasons it has been given so much unwarranted poublicity is not far to seek. The Reprieve organisation, which is fighting her corner, is trying to raise 15,000 for her defence, money that could be better spent - or donated - to genuinely worthy causes, like the Haitian earthquake appeal.

I have no doubt there may be genuinely innocent people sitting on Death Row, and I am certain there are countless innocent people in prisons worldwide, but Linda Carty is not one of them.

Would it be too much to ask that before it runs these sort of "advertorials" the BBC does the most basic fact checking?

Yours Sincerely,
A Baron

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BBC Complaints [T20100227016RS010Z7893329]
Tuesday, 6 April, 2010 10:08 AM
From: "complaintresponse@bbc.co.uk"

Dear Mr Baron

Thanks for your e-mail about BBC News on 26 February.

Please accept our apologies for the delay in replying. We know our correspondents appreciate a quick response and we are sorry you have had to wait on this occasion.

I understand you had concerns with regards to our coverage of the case of Linda Carty and I appreciate you felt that the report was sympathetic, distorted and biased and I note your personal views on the case.

We made no judgement on the case, but presented the facts and background information and highlighted the reasons why a retrial has been requested by her legal team. This also included reference to The Foreign Office who has previously complained of 'ineffective counsel' at a court hearing in support of Carty.

BBC journalists are well aware of our commitment to impartial reporting and seek to provide the information which will enable viewers to make up their own minds; to show the reality and provide the forum for debate, giving full opportunity for all viewpoints to be heard.

Our news coverage doesn't seek to denigrate any view, nor to promote any view, but seeks to identify all significant views and to test them rigorously and fairly on behalf of the audience.

I do acknowledge your strong views on this report and I can assure you we appreciate your feedback. Your comments have been fully registered on our audience log which is made available to all members of the BBC, including the News teams and senior BBC management.

This ensures that your comments and others we receive are considered across the BBC.

Thanks again for taking the time to contact us.

Regards

Nicola Maguire
BBC Complaints


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