Source: All England Reporter
Publisher Citation: [2002] All ER (D) 272 (Jan)
Court: Privy Council
Judge:

Lord Bingham of Cornhill, Lord Hope of Craighead, Lord Hutton, Lord Millett and Lord Rodger of Earlsferry

Judgment Dates: 29 January 2002

Catchwords

Human rights - Fair trial - Criminal charge - Length of proceedings - Whether breach of reasonable time requirement - European Convention on Human Rights, art 6.

The Case

In any case in which it was said that the reasonable time requirement had been violated in breach of art6(1) of the European Convention on Human Rights, the first step was to consider the period of time which had elapsed. Unless the period was one which, on its face and without more, gave grounds for real concern it was almost certainly unnecessary to go further, since the Convention was directed not to departures from the ideal but to infringements of basic human rights. But if the period which had elapsed was one which, on its face and without more, gave ground for real concern it was necessary for the court to look into the detailed facts and circumstances of the particular case and for the contracting state to explain and justify any lapse of time which appeared to be excessive.

If you are a LexisLibrary subscriber you can read more about this case here.