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Page last updated at 09:32 GMT, Friday, 30 November 2012

McCann: Leveson does not go far enough


Gerry McCann, father of Madeleine, was a victim of newspaper journalism at its worst.

Speaking to Today presenter John Humphrys, he explained that "without the statutory underpinning this system will not work."

Lord Justice Leveson's long awaited report recommended a tougher form of press self-regulation, backed by legislation, should be introduced to uphold press standards.

The report said the press had failed to properly regulate itself in the past, Sir Brian Leveson said he believed the law could be used to "validate" a new body.

"I don't think the report has gone far enough... he has given the press another opportunity of self regulation," Mr McCann said.

"I have concerns that this system is not compulsory."

He went on to concede: "Full implementation of Lord [Justice] Leveson's report is the is the minimum acceptable compromise for me and I think for many other victims who have suffered at the hands of the press."

The father described the damage that he and his family continue to suffer from: "There is still a tremendous amount of vile written about us [on the internet]... and we have to face that going forward on a daily basis... and our twins who are almost eight will have to deal with that."

Reflecting on the behaviour of journalists he added that "there were many ridiculous aspects... that were unbelievably damaging".

"The prime minister and our other elected politicians have the opportunity now to do the right thing.

"If they do the right thing for the public then it will restore a little bit of confidence."

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