Fiona Barton QC and Alex Ustych successfully represent West Midlands Police in a judicial review proceedings arising from senior officer misconduct proceedings.

An assistant chief constable sought permission to apply for judicial review of a special case panel’s decision that offences he had committed contrary to the Official Secrets Act 1989 amounted to gross misconduct and its recommendation that he be dismissed. The officer alleged apparent bias on the part of 2 members of the special case panel at a Reg. 53 hearing and obtained a without notice interim injunction prohibiting the second stage hearing before the Chief Constable under Reg. 54.

Fiona and Alex received urgent instructions to advise and draft the Chief Constable’s response. They did so over a weekend thereby enabling the permission hearing to be expedited. The officer’s application for permission was refused and the injunction was discharged. The Court accepted the submissions made on behalf of the Chief Constable that there were no exceptional circumstances present to warrant judicial review and the appropriate course was to pursue an appeal to the police appeals tribunal. The Court gave guidance on the test to be applied.

The case is reported on Lawtel: LTL 3/4/2018 Case Law – AC5002419