Amand v Home Secretary and Minister of Defence of Royal Netherlands Government: HL 1943

A Dutch serviceman who had been arrested for desertion and brought before a magistrate who ordered him to be handed over to the Dutch military authorities under the Allied Forces Act 1940. An application for habeas corpus was rejected by a Divisional Court. The Court of Appeal held that they had no jurisdiction to entertain an appeal from the Divisional Court.
Held: The refusal of an application for habeas corpus by a person committed to prison with a view to extradition was a decision in a ‘criminal cause or matter.’
Viscount Simon LC said that the: ‘distinction between cases of habeas corpus in a criminal matter, and cases when the matter is not criminal goes back very far . . it is the nature and character of the proceeding in which habeas corpus is sought which provide the test . . If the matter is one the direct outcome of which may be trial of the applicant and his possible punishment for an alleged offence by a court claiming jurisdiction to do so, the matter is criminal.’
Lord Porter said: ‘This does not mean that the matter, to be criminal, must be criminal throughout. It is enough if the proceeding in respect of which mandamus was asked is criminal, eg, the recovery of a poor rate is not of itself a criminal matter, but its enforcement by magistrates by warrant of distress is, and if a cause be stated by them as to their right to enforce it and that the case is determined by the High Court, no appeal lies . . The proceeding from which the appeal is attempted to be taken must be a step in a criminal proceeding, but it need not of itself of necessity end in a criminal trial or punishment. It is enough if it puts the person brought up before the magistrate in jeopardy of a criminal charge. . .’
Lord Wright said: ‘The principle which I deduce from the authorities I have cited and the other relevant authorities which I have considered, is that if the cause or matter is one which, if carried to its conclusion, might result in the conviction of the person charged and in a sentence of some punishment such as imprisonment or a fine, it is a ‘criminal cause or matter. The person charged is thus put in jeopardy. Every order made in such a cause or matter by an English court, is an order in a criminal cause or matter, even though the order, taken by itself, is neutral in character and might equally have been made in a cause or matter which is not criminal. The order may not involve punishment by the law of this country, but if the effect of the order is to subject by means of the operation of English law the persons charged to the criminal jurisdiction of a foreign country, the order is, in the eyes of English law for the purposes being considered, an order in a criminal cause or matter’ and ‘. . the immediate [habeas corpus application] . . was not the cause or matter to which the section refers. The cause or matter in question was the application to the court to exercise its powers under the Allied Forces Act . . to deliver the appellant to the Dutch military authorities. It is in reference to the nature of that proceeding that it must be determined whether there was an order made in a criminal cause or matter.’

Viscount Simon LC, Wright, Atkin, Thankerton, Porter LL
[1943] AC 147, [1942] 2 All ER 381
Supreme Court of Judicature (Consolidation) Act 1925 31(1)(a)
England and Wales
ApprovedEx parte Alice Woodhall CA 8-May-1888
Extradition proceedings are in their nature criminal proceedings. Lindley LJ said: ‘Can we say that the application in the present case is not an application in a criminal cause or matter? I think that in substance it certainly is. Its whole object . .

Cited by:
CitedIn Re Levin; Regina v Governor of Brixton Prison, Ex parte Levin HL 10-Apr-1997
The applicant had been detained pending extradition to the United States on charges of fraud. He said the evidence would not have been sufficient to justify his committal for trial.
Held: The Francis case did not establish that the 1984 Act . .
AppliedBonalumi v Secretary of State for the Home Department CA 1985
In the course of extradition proceedings, an order was obtained under the 1879 Act. The defendant sought to appeal against the order, and applied to the Court of Appeal.
Held: The procedure under the 1879 Act was in the course of criminal . .
CitedRegina on the Application of South West Yorkshire Mental Health NHS Trust v Crown Court at Bradford CA 19-Dec-2003
A appealed an order made by the Crown Court under the 1964 Act for his detention in a mental hospital on the grounds that he was unfit to enter a plea to the charge of murder.
Held: The Court of Appal had no jurisdiction to hear the appeal. . .
CitedDay v Grant (Note) CA 1985
(January 1985) The court must look to the underlying nature of the proceedings in which the order was made and against which an appeal was sought to see to which court an appeal lay. ‘So Lord Wright was saying that you look not at the particular . .
CitedRegina v Parole Board ex parte Smith, Regina v Parole Board ex parte West (Conjoined Appeals) HL 27-Jan-2005
Each defendant challenged the way he had been treated on revocation of his parole licence, saying he should have been given the opportunity to make oral representations.
Held: The prisoners’ appeals were allowed.
Lord Bingham stated: . .
CitedRegina (McCann and Others) v Manchester Crown Court CA 9-Mar-2001
Proceedings applying for an anti-social behaviour order, were properly civil proceedings, with civil standards of evidence, and the Human Rights Act provisions relating to criminal proceedings, were not applicable either. The section included acts . .
CitedClingham (formerly C (a minor)) v Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea; Regina v Crown Court at Manchester Ex parte McCann and Others HL 17-Oct-2002
The applicants had been made subject of anti-social behaviour orders. They challenged the basis upon which the orders had been made.
Held: The orders had no identifiable consequences which would make the process a criminal one. Civil standards . .
CitedKnowles and others v Superintendent of HM Prison Fox Hill and others PC 23-Mar-2005
(Bahamas) The claimants resisted requests for their extradition to the US on drugs charges. . .
CitedAlexander, Farrelly and Others, Re Judicial Review QBNI 5-Mar-2009
Each claimant said that they had been wrongfully arrested, the arresting police officers having either failed to ask whether the arrest was necessary (Farrelly), or mistakenly concluding so.
Held: The Order now contained in regulation . .
CitedGuardian News and Media Ltd, Regina (on The Application of) v City of Westminster Magistrates’ Court and Another CA 25-Oct-2011
The claimant newspaper sought to appeal against a refusal by the respondent to disclose papers filed in a case before it. The court considered whether it had jurisdiction to hear an appeal.
Held: Under the 1981 Act no appeal would lie if the . .
AppliedRegina v Southampton Justices ex parte Green CA 1976
The court considered whether as the Court of Appeal, it had jurisdiction to hear an appeal against the Divisional Court’s refusal to quash an order estreating a recognisance.
Held: It did. Lord Denning MR said that ‘the matter is criminal’ if . .
DistinguishedIn re Smalley HL 1985
Challenge by a surety to an estreatment of his recognizance was not a matter relating to a trial on indictment for the purpose of section 29(3) because it did not affect the conduct of the trial. A sensible legislative purpose can be seen for . .
CitedBelhaj and Another v Director of Public Prosecutions and Another SC 4-Jul-2018
Challenge to decision not to prosecute senior Intelligence Service officials for alleged offences in connection with his unlawful rendition and mistreatment in Libya. The issue here was whether on the hearing of the application for judicial review, . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Extradition, Litigation Practice

Leading Case

Updated: 10 November 2021; Ref: scu.180863