In 1990 a German actor was murdered by two men, Wolfgang Werlé and Manfred Lauber. Both men were convicted to life in prison for the crime and were each released in the last two years. German law provides convicted criminals the right to have news accounts scrubbed of their identity after their debt to society has been paid. The pair successfully used the German legal system to have their names removed from the German-language Wikipedia which had previously identified them. (Click here to see the German entry translated into English by Google's software)
Then they, or their lawyer, foolishly attempted to have their names removed from the English-language version of the article, only to run into one of our best national values, the First Amendment. In the process the pair generated enough attention that a New York Times article was published yesterday to cover the conflict. Far from making their names less public, they've now been ensconced in the national "paper of record".
But it doesn't end there: there's posts on Twitter, blog posts (like this one), legal and policy analysis by professionals like this one at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and plenty of additional news coverage.
Little, if any, of this information will ever go away as the unending storage of the Internet and the draw of advertising revenues incentivizes every one of these entities to want to not just keep the information online, but retain it through future changes in technology such as website redesigns and upgrades of content management software.
(Just for fun, go Google the name "Wolfgang Werle".)
Furthermore, the legal tools that most people use for this sort of suppression don't work across borders, and there's always someone across another border that is happy to aggravate you by re-posting it.
This is a catastrophic public relations failure by an attorney with apparently little knowledge of the communications dynamics of the Internet. It's a lesson that appears to need to be learned over, and over, and over, and over again.
Conflicts of this sort are called the "Streisand Effect", after Barbra Streisand attempted to have photos of her Malibu home removed from the Internet, which instead made them even more noteworthy by drawing attention to them, as I have just done for you. Image of Streisand's Malibu home from the Wikipedia page.