POLICE have arrested a man in connection with a tweet allegedly revealing the identity of the complainant in Coronation Street actor Michael Le Vell’s trial for multiple child sex offences.
• Man, 23, arrested after message published on Twitter revealing details about alleged victim of sexual abuse
• Michael Le Vell faces 19 charges of child sex offences
A 23-year-old man was taken into custody after a message was published on Twitter on Wednesday. Police said the tweet also expressed “personal opinion” about the soap star’s alleged victim.
Detective Chief Inspector Chris Bridge, of GMP’s public protection division, said: “Maintaining the anonymity of victims of sex offences is absolutely vital and is something that really helps encourage them to come forward.
“Breaching this ruling is an extremely serious offence and that is why we launched an investigation as soon as we became aware.
“Social media is an immensely powerful tool that does an awful lot of good, but it can also be used to spread rumour, speculation and in this case break the law.
“As a force GMP embraces the use of social media but when it is abused in this way we will take robust action to hold those responsible to account.”
Victims of sexual offences are entitled to lifetime anonymity under the Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act 1992.
The suspect has been released on bail pending further inquiries, police said.
Le Vell appeared in court earlier in the week as he faces 19 charges of child sex offences.
In a statement released shortly after his arrest, he said: “I am innocent of these charges and intend to fight them vigorously.”
ITV said the actor would not appear in any future episodes of Coronation Street until the conclusion of legal proceedings.