Media By: Alice Kuzmenko


Detention of a minor for his own protection

14 July 2020 by

The High Court recently dismissed a claim of incompatibility with Article 5 ECHR arising from a detention of a minor for his own protection in the case of Archer v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis [2020] EWHC 1567 (QB).

Background

On 17 February 2012, the Claimant, then 15 years’ old, was struck on the head and stabbed in his back and head by persons he described as members of a local gang, the Deptford Boys. This took place near to his home. He was treated at King’s College Hospital.

But on 22 February 2012, he was arrested on suspicion of violent disorder and possession of an offensive weapon. He was placed in a cell at 7:25am, and by 7:45pm he was charged with those two offences. He was, however, refused bail at 7:53pm. The reasons for refusal by Sergeant Smith are recorded as follows:

[…] it is believed necessary to further detain the person for their own protection, that the detained person has been arrested for a non-imprisonable offence and it is believed necessary to further detain to prevent physical injury to another person, that the detained person has been arrested for an imprisonable offence and it is believed necessary to further detain in order to prevent the commission of a further offence.

The grounds are Dp [sc. detained person] has been involved in a ‘gang’ related fight where he has sustained injuries that required hospital treatment. It is feared that if released on bail there will be repercussions where he may sustain further injuries or inflict violence upon his original intended victims.

On the morning of 23 February, he was taken to Bexley Youth Court, where he was remanded in custody.

It is this period of 13 hours from the refusal of bail to the remand by Court that the Claimant sought to argue was unlawful.


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High Court overturns decision not to prosecute rape allegation

14 April 2020 by

The Divisional Court has recently handed down a novel decision in R (FNM) v DPP, considering the right of complainants to a fair opportunity to make representations to the Director for Public Prosecutions (“DPP”), and for those representations to be considered, when conducting a review under the Victims’ Right to Review Scheme (“the VRR Scheme”).

The Court held that in circumstances where the DPP had not waited to give the complaint an opportunity to make representations as to whether there should be a criminal prosecution, the decision not to prosecute was materially flawed.


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