16th November 2017
Anthony Lenanton, instructed by Glynis Craig of IPCC Legal Services, represented the Independent Police Complaints Commission in defending a claim in respect of an alleged breach of Article 5(2) of the European Convention on Human Rights (right to be informed promptly of reasons for arrest).
In 2012, the Claimant was arrested by the Metropolitan Police Service on suspicion of harassment. He was charged but acquitted.
The Claimant subsequently complained to the MPS, who dismissed his complaint. He appealed to the IPCC who upheld his complaint in part. The Claimant sought further information from the IPCC about the reasons for his arrest, but his request was declined.
He subsequently commenced proceedings in the county court alleging that the IPCC’s refusal to provide further disclosure was a breach of his Article 5(2) rights and entitled him to an order compelling disclosure and damages.
The IPCC applied for summary judgment and the Claimant made a cross-application to strike out the Defence. The matter came before HHJ Freeland QC at Central London County Court who heard submissions from both sides over the course of a full day.
In a reserved judgment, the Judge granted summary judgment to the IPCC and dismissed the claim. The Judge accepted the IPCC’s submissions that the rationale underlying Article 5(2), a buffer against arbitrary arrest, could not apply months later when the IPCC are determining a complaint. Further, Article 5 does not oblige the IPCC, to remedy the failings of another organ of state, here the MPS.
Anthony Lenanton represented the IPCC at the summary judgment hearing.