Source: All England Reporter
Publisher Citation: [2012] All ER (D) 333 (Oct)
Neutral Citation: [2012] UKSC 48
Court: Supreme Court

Lord Phillips P, Lady Hale, Lord Kerr, Lord Dyson, Lord Wilson, Lord Reed and Lord Carnwath SCJJ

Representation Nathalie Lieven QC, Ben Jaffey and Tristan Jones (instructed by Leigh Day & Co) for the applicant.
  James Eadie QC, Ben Watson and Dan Sarooshi (instructed by the Treasury Solicitor) for the Secretaries of State.
  Thomas de la Mare QC and Fraser Campbell (instructed by Allen & Overy LLP) for JUSTICE as the intervening party.
Judgment Dates: 31 October 2012


Habeas corpus - Jurisdiction - Prisoner of war - Applicant Pakistan national being captured by British forces in Iraq - Applicant being transferred to and detained by United States forces - Applicant being detained for over seven years without trial - Secretary of State not requesting applicant's release - Court of Appeal ordering issue of writ of habeas corpus - United States responding negotiations more appropriate with Pakistan - Court of Appeal satisfied return of writ sufficient - Whether Secretary of State having power or control over claimant - Whether court improperly intruding into foreign policy - Whether return of writ sufficient.

The Case

Habeas corpus Jurisdiction. Mr Rahmatullah had been captured by British armed forces in Iraq and handed over to the United States, who transferred him to Afghanistan. The Court of Appeal, Civil Division, had ordered that a writ of habeas corpus be issued by the UK government. The United States replied that they were already in talks with the Pakistan government regarding his return. The Supreme Court dismissed the Secretaries of State's appeal against the order to issue the writ and dismissed Rahmatullah's appeal against the Court of Appeal's finding that the return of the writ had been sufficient.

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