BirminghamLive/ Birmingham Mail Reach PLC
The second story came after a tip off to my emails about a convicted rapist who had worked in a Birmingham nightclub. The woman claimed to be the first victim of Iyoseph Derry, a boyfriend who had her eye socket broken and neck slashed. As the offences were historic, and we had not covered them before, this required checks with Birmingham Crown Court to ensure we had our facts straight before pursuing an interview. Again, this required skill and expertise to handle correctly. Clearly, exposing a rapist's vile criminal past is in the public interest. In a follow-up story, to run the next day, I also exclusively exposed the fact he had been working illegally at Banjul nightclub, despite these previous convictions. This was verified by back and forth checks with the Security Industry Alliance (SIA). In line with my focus on crime, the third article centres around a convicted conman who fled to Dubai to live a lavish lifestyle - despite owing HMRC £2.2million (which I had to confirm with HMRC and was only able to through strong contacts at the press office). After a source contacted me from Dubai, I began investigating his lifestyle. It was discovered the Solihull fraudster was partying in luxury penthouses and living in a multi-million pound villa with a maid. When approached for a comment, he was abusive and threatening towards me over the planned story, but through tactful conversation, I was able to confirm details - such as his address - through his response. I was also able to source images of his luxury life, from his villa to penthouse parties. It gathered a huge interest, with 30,000 page views online.