An ex-university friend of BBC Newsnight presenter Emily Maitlis claimed that he turned up unannounced at her marital home in the late night is not stalking. He described his behavior as “a Hugh Grant kind of thing”.
Edward Vines is accused to have tried to break a restraining Order against Ms Maitlis six times more by writing letters from May 31 to September 21 last years after more than 25 year of harassment.
The 51-year-old admitted to writing ‘testy, volatile letters’ to the journalist during cross-examination at Nottingham Crown Court Friday.
Edward Vines (pictured right) is alleged to have attempted to breach a restraining order by penning letters expressing his ‘unrequited love’ for Emily Maitlis (left) from prison
When asked by Ian Way, a prosecutor, if Vines believed he was above law, Vines replied that Emily seems to believe so.
The defendant stated that he believed he was in violation of the order. However, he did not believe that he was harassing her.
Vines told jurors that he felt pressured into pleading guilty to the initial harassment charge in 2002 because he didn’t want to be’subjected’ to further attacks by Wandsworth Prison prisoners.
The court was previously informed that the defendant had’systematically, with increasing frequency’ violated two separate restraining order imposed in 2002 and 2009. He has 12 breaches and seven separate prosecutions.
Vines is currently being tried for writing six letters to Marion Maitlis (journalist) from HMP Nottingham. These letters were intercepted and thrown out by prison staff.
As he posed as himself in front of the witness box, the man refused to answer the question: “What was your reasonable excuse to write these letters?”
Vines responded to Mr Way’s questions with additional details, “It is not unreasonable to have this problem about Emily.”
“It isn’t totally reasonable because she didn’t know I loved them.”
Mr Way then asked: “Is it reasonable for a woman to write to me… a testy, or volatile letter?”
Vines is currently on trial for writing six letters from HMP Nottingham to Maitlis and her mother (pictured). These letters were intercepted prison staff
Vines responded, “It is not unreasonable that it should be criminally punished.”
The defendant claimed to the jury that Ms Maitlis had lied to him about the extent of his behavior leading up to his first criminal conviction. He also accused her of perjury.
“Did she tell you that you were harassing her or badgering her?” Mr Way asked. “Was that not true?”
Vines replied, “I have not snooped around,”
Mr Way asked the defendant if he believed that turning up at her workplace, then at her marital home at 10.30pm, was stalking.
Vines replied, “I would describe it like a Hugh Grant type of thing.” It was a little awkward.
Vines denies all six charges
The trial continues.