Two sisters who have been refused information concerning the name of an individual who posted allegedly defamatory information about them intend to take their case through the civil courts, the Shields Gazette reports.
Geraldine White and Karen Nicholson had been accused by the person, who wrote under the pen name of Brenda on local blog Curly's Corner Shop last year, of rigging a Labour party selection ballot eight years ago.
A subsequent investigation conducted by Labour chiefs at the time revealed that neither sisters had touched the ballots, which have remained locked in a solicitor's safe since.
The IP address of the writer was traced to a computer operated by South Tyneside Council, however, citing the Data Protection Act and Human Rights Act, the council has decided not to disclose the identity of the individual.
Mrs Nicholson, from the coastal town of South Shields, stated: "It's a disgrace, it's an absolute scandal. We won't let this lie and we'll be taking this to court."