LONDON, November 26, 2001 ( – The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) in the UK has insisted on placing newspaper advertisements which describe morning-after pills as abortion-inducing, despite a warning from advertising regulators. Donna Mitchell of the Committee for Advertising Practice warned the group that continued ads with the banned message could lead to fines and imprisonment.

John Smeaton, SPUC’s national director, is prepared to go to jail rather than accede to the Advertising Standards Authority’s ruling that SPUC should change its claim so that it is presented as opinion rather than fact. Ms Mitchell told The Universe newspaper that the Office of Fair Trading, a government body, could prosecute those who infringed the advertising industry’s voluntary guidelines.

[The Universe and Catholic Times, 25 November]