It's a bit harder to pin blame

When instead of a central whipping boy like Ashcroft you have hundreds if not thousands of bureaucrats and judges… This should be a bit unsettling for the European press.

Which raises the question: should journalists be covered by the same sort of confidentiality agreements that lawyers and doctors have? Should the courts have the ability to challenge journalists to reveal their sources or turn over documentary evidence or face legal consequences such as fines or jail time for contempt of court?

The Torygraph just sinks to new lows every time I read it. Did you not notice the complete lack of balance in that europhobic trash? Where were the opinions of the people on the other side of the euro-hating fence? I’m not a great fan of the bureaucrats in Brussels, but this is bordering on lies, although I note they are careful to insert the word “appear” in between saying that they ignore human rights. The real truth in this story is that the Belgian police confiscated Tillack’s documents on the suspicion that he was bribing officials to leak information. As part of the EU fraud investigation body, OLAF were allowed to examine his documents. Tillack applied to the court of human rights in an attempt to block the investigation, on the grounds that having his seized documents investigated would put his sources at risk. He attempted to do this by claiming that the EU was in cahoots with the Belgian police, a claim he tried to back up with the same documents that he’d bribed officials for in the first place. The Court of Human Rights didn’t say that the law doesn’t apply to the EU, it said that he didn’t provide sufficient evidence to support his claim, and so they turned it down!

Maybe you could argue that the court was wrong to rule in this way, but it is not the same as ignoring human rights.