Christopher Jefferies, 66, said he was ‘shamelessly vilified’ by the Star and other newspapers and had to change his appearance and live ‘a hole and corner’ existence after police arrested him on suspicion of the murder of Joanne Yeates.

The Star later paid him substantial libel damages along with the Sun, Daily Mirror, Sunday Mirror, Daily Record, Daily Mail, The Scotsman and Daily Express. He said his normal life was suspended as he moved from one safe-house to another until police stopped proceedings against him in March this year, adding: ‘The Press set about what can only be described as a witch-hunt. 

'The tabloid Press decided that I was guilty of Miss Yeates’s murder and seemed determined to persuade the public of my guilt. They embarked on a frenzied  campaign to blacken my character by publishing a series of very serious allegations about me which were completely untrue, allegations which were a mixture of smear, innuendo and complete fiction.’