Source: All England Reporter
Publisher Citation: [2013] All ER (D) 391 (Jul)
Neutral Citation: [2013] EWHC 2317 (Admin)
Court: Queen's Bench Division, Divisional Court

Sir John Thomas P and Mr Justice Sweeney

Representation Dominic Grieve QC and Louis Mably (instructed by the Treasury Solicitor) for the applicant.
  Lord Carlile of Berriew QC and Nicholas Chapman (instructed by Janes Solicitors) for D.
  John Cooper QC and Richard Furlong (instructed by Ledgisters Solicitors) for B.
Judgment Dates: 29 July 2013


Contempt of court - Criminal contempt - Intention to interfere with due administration of justice - Applicant seeking order of committal against two respondents, D and B, for contempt of court in misconducting themselves whilst serving as jurors in Crown Court - D, whilst serving as juror, allegedly posting message on Facebook concerning case being tried in breach of judge's directions - B, in breach of jury oath or affirmation and directions being given by trial judge, allegedly conducting internet research on case trying, obtaining extraneous information about case and imparting information to other members of jury - Whether respondents committing contempt of court.

The Case

Contempt of court Criminal contempt. The instant proceedings concerned two applications by which the applicant sought an order of committal against each of the respondents, D and B, for contempt of court in misconducting themselves whilst serving as jurors in the Crown Court. In relation to D, it was alleged that D, whilst serving as a juror, in breach of the judge's directions, had posted a message on Facebook concerning the case he was trying and had compromised his role as a juror by displaying apparent bias and disregard for his jury oath. In relation to B, it was alleged that, in breach of his jury oath or affirmation and the directions given by the trial judge and other warnings, he had conducted internet research on the case he was trying, had thereby obtained extraneous information about the case and had imparted that information to other members of the jury. The Divisional Court held that both D and B had done acts which had created a real risk of interference with the administration of justice and which had been specifically intended by them to interfere with the administration of justice.

Practice Areas

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