Sentence Imprisonment. The defendant was convicted of sexual activity with a child family member in relation to his step-daughter and he was sentenced to six-and-a-half years' imprisonment. In allowing the sentence, the judge held that the sentence was manifestly excessive. The nature of the offence, namely digital penetration, did not justify a sentence over the five-year starting point recommended in the sentencing guidelines. Taking account of the mitigating factors, the appropriate sentence was four years' imprisonment.
Family provision Widow. The claimant had been imprisoned for the manslaughter of her husband, caused by her putting on the handbrake in a car during an argument. She was unable to inherit the deceased's property. On her release, the issue arose as to whether she should be allowed to benefit from the forfeiture rule in of the Forfeiture Act 1982. The court held that it would be just for the claimant to receive the net capital in the estate in full to include any additional payment negotiated from the insurers up to but not beyond 200,000.
Criminal law Appeal. The Court of Appeal, Criminal Division, dismissed a defendant's appeal against conviction for burglary in circumstances where the defendant's grounds of appeal centred on the admissibility of evidence that appeared to place the defendant at the scene of the crime and refute the defendant's alibi that he had been elsewhere at the time the burglary had occurred.
Criminal law Appeal. The Court of Appeal, Criminal Division dismissed a defendant's appeal against conviction for dishonestly making false representations contrary to s2 of the in respect of a motor insurance claim, in circumstances where the defendant criticised evidence that had been admitted, the form of the indictment and the prosecution's cross examination. The Court rejected the defendant's contention that the conviction was unsafe.
Children and young persons Court proceedings. Three children were being cared for by their grandmother as there had been concerns regarding their mother's care for them, in particular her relationship with a child sex offender. In anticipation of the man's release from prison, the proceedings were issued with the intention of requiring the local authority to conduct a risk assessment. An assessment was conducted and a subsequent assessment was carried out when the details of the offender's release were available. Between the first and second assessment, the police's opinion on risk changed materially, consequently, the authority found that the children were at no greater risk than any other child in the area. The children's application for judicial review of that assessment was dismissed. The Court of Appeal, Civil Division, found that the second assessment had been unlawful as it had not dealt with the police's change in position.
Prison Removal of prisoner from one prison to another. The claimant, who was a serving recalled life sentence prisoner, brought a claim for misfeasance in public office against the defendant trust on the basis that it was vicariously liable for the actions of G, a Life Manager at an open prison. The trust applied to strike out the claim, or alternatively for summary judgment. The Administrative Court, in granting summary judgment, held that an examination of the evidence relied upon in support of the claim led to the conclusion that there was no credible motive that would have led G to have acted maliciously and there was no evidence that he had been motivated by malice. Further, there was no evidence that G had acted dishonestly or in bad faith.
Immigration Detention. The Administrative Court held that the claimant, an Indian citizen, was entitled to a declaration that the entire second period of her detention following a failed asylum bid in the UK, was unlawful. However, she was only entitled to nominal damages for false imprisonment in relation to that detention.
Judicial review Application for judicial review. Having pleaded guilty to being drunk in a public place while having the charge of a child under the age of seven years, the claimant councillor, who had a two-and-a-half year old daughter, B, applied for an order for reporting conditions pursuant to s39 of the . The magistrates' court refused the application and the claimant brought judicial review proceedings seeking to challenge that decision. In dismissing the claim, the Administrative Court held that on any sensible construction of s39 of the 1933 Act, the criminal proceedings had been taken 'in respect of' and thus 'concerned' B, but that, in all the circumstances of the case, the justices had had a reasonable basis for concluding that no order under s39 had been justified.
Sentence Confiscation order. The claimant had been convicted of conspiracy to supply cannabis and had been made subject to a confiscation order in the sum of approximately 627,553 on the basis that he had sufficient assets to meet the order, namely a house valued at approximately 900,000. The claimant having missed the deadline for payment of the order, the magistrates' court refused an application for an adjournment and made a warrant of commitment. In dismissing the claimant's claim for judicial review of the decision to refuse the adjournment and to issue a warrant of commitment, the Administrative Court held that the claimant had not demonstrated that the justices had erred in their approach and that the claimant's submissions did not seem to have any substance.
Libel and slander Damages. The court had previously held that the second defendant was liable for slander and libel, and harassment of the claimant. The instant proceedings concerned the assessment of damages and the claimant's application for a permanent order for anonymity. The Queen's Bench Division awarded 100,000 to compensate the claimant for the injury to his reputation, and to mark the seriousness of the slanders and libels, and 20,000 to compensate the claimant for distress and harassment he had suffered. It further granted anonymity on a permanent basis, because the second defendant was attempting to blackmail him.