The Practice has a wealth of experience in relation to Judicial Reviews which primarily seek to challenge decisions on the basis of the Wednesbury criteria as to what is reasonable and appropriate in any given situation.
It is often the case however that those upon whom the decision will have an effect may not be the initial litigating parties. Such parties, who may be affected by any ruling made, should be provided with the opportunity to have their views heard, and the Practice has extensive experience in acting for such interested persons.
Some years ago the Practice acted for the officers who successfully Judicially Reviewed the finding of unlawful killing in relation to the Roger Sylvester (Tottenham Inquest). Since that time the Practice has been heavily involved in a large number of “high profile” Judicial Reviews, arising from cases involving death after contact with police, or death in custody.
Judicial Reviews can however arise in a variety of instances and there is a need for great caution in identifying when an individual may necessarily be an Interested Party to such an application. A growing area of law in this regard concerns flawed and incompetent IPCC investigations where a complainant may Judicial Review a decision made by the IPCC in relation to an investigation and the IPCC consent to an Order rescinding their original decision on the basis that is it conceded that the original investigation was in some way inadequate, or otherwise flawed. In such cases officers may be joined as Interested Parties to the Judicial Review, whether the primary parties are the IPCC, or the MPS and the complainant. The Practice has considerable experience in representing the interests of officers in such reviews.
A developing area of law in relation to Judicial Review concerns Regulation 10A, Police Conduct Regulations 2012, and whether officers should be allowed to resign or retire when they have outstanding criminal or gross misconduct allegations. The Practice represented PC Andrew Birks in 2014 in relation to his application to contest his suspension.
More recently, the Practice successfully acted for Officer FE16 in relation to supporting the MPS who were defendants to an application by the family of Jermaine Baker who sought to have the officer suspended, pending the resolution of an independent IPCC investigation into the fatal shooting of Jermaine Baker. The High Court ruled that the officer should be allowed to retire. The practice acted in similar proceedings for an Inspector where the decision of the MPS has been to allow the officer to retire, notwithstanding an outstanding criminal allegation of on duty assault occasioning actual bodily harm from an incident in 2011. Again, we were successful on behalf of the officer who was allowed to leave the MPS.
Recently the Practice represented all four officers who gave evidence at the Inquest into the Death of Henry Hicks, during the course of that Inquest the Hicks family Judicially Reviewed the decision made that the officers should give evidence anonymously. The Practice, representing the officers before the Inquest, argued successfully before the High Court on behalf of the officers that they should not be identified by name, and should give evidence from behind screens at the Inquest.
Judicial Review remains a growing and expanding remedy and area of law, and it has proved to be the case that there are a variety of ways in which police related issues arise in such reviews either through death in custody cases, IPCC investigations, or other ways. The Practice has considerable experience over the last twenty years in dealing with all such matters on behalf of individual officers, or groups of officers who find themselves caught up in such an application in connection with duty related matters.