Channel 4 fights back

Channel 4 has responded robustly to the West Midlands Police and Crown Prosecution service. In last night’s Channel 4 News Krishnan Guru-Murthy investigated the CPS’s claim that Undercover Mosque “completely distorted” what the speakers had said by interviewing one of them – Abu Usamah At-Thahabi.

As the accusations are about misrepresenting the views of those filmed, Guru-Murthy asked Abu Usamah:

Which of these views that ‘women are deficient’, that ‘non-Muslims are pathological liars and terrorists’ and that and that ‘homosexuals are dogs that should be murdered’ do you not believe?

You can marvel at the demented imam’s squirming question-avoidance by downloading the 13-minute report from Channel 4’s website (if you are using Windows XP with IE 5.5 or 6 and WMP 10, that is).

Dispatches commissioning editor Kevin Sutcliffe is also interviewed. He continued to express bafflement at the police complaints, saying that they have presented “no evidence” that the views of the speakers had been distorted, or that Channel 4 deliberately tried to “undermine community relations”. Responding to Guru-Murthy’s observation that his integrity has been impugned by the police accusations, he replied

I will take advice from my legal department.

As Bartholomew notes, this would not be the first time the UK police have responded to a TV documentary with an investigation, only to turn on the documentary-maker:

In 1999 Donal MacIntyre went undercover for a programme about the abuse of adults with learning disabilities in care homes in Kent: when the subsequent police investigation floundered, they accused MacIntyre of wasting police time. MacIntyre sued for libel and won.

2 Responses to “Channel 4 fights back”

  1. neil h says:

    The main Channel 4 page for that report is not working at the moment, but the clips have been uploaded to Youtube part 1 and part 2.

    Interesting viewing!

  2. NoJags Neil says:

    What, exactly, has “community cohesion” got to do with either the West Midlands Police, or the CPS? That is a political matter. The duty of the West Midlands Police and CPS is to enforce the laws that are made by our elected representatives.