Campbell v Hall: 1774

The appellant argued that, since the Crown had had no power to make laws for the colony of Ceylon which offended against fundamental principles, at independence it could not hand over to Ceylon a higher power than it possessed itself.
Held: The power of the King in Council to make prerogative orders in respect of colonies is restricted at common law: ‘The 6th and last proposition is, that if the King (and when I say the King, I always mean the King without the concurrence of Parliament,) has a power to alter the old and to introduce new laws in a conquered country, this legislation being subordinate, that is, subordinate to his own authority in Parliament, he cannot make any new change contrary to fundamental principles: he cannot exempt an inhabitant from that particular dominion; as for instance, from the laws of trade, or from the power of Parliament, or give him privileges exclusive of his other subjects; and so in many other instances which might be put.’ and ‘no question was ever started before, but that the King has a right to a legislative authority over a conquered country.’


Mansfield LCJ


(1774) 1 Cowp 204, [1774] EngR 5





Cited by:

CitedBancoult, Regina (on the Application of) v Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (No 2) Admn 11-May-2006
The claimant on behalf of himself and other islanders sought a declaration that the 2004 Order was unlawful. The islands had been emptied of people in 1973 and before in order to allow use of the islands as military bases. He had enjoyed a right to . .
CitedLiyanage v The Queen PC 1967
(Ceylon) The appellants had been convicted of grave criminal offences under laws of the Parliament of Ceylon. The Act under which they were convicted was passed after an abortive coup, and deprived the appellants retrospectively of their right to . .
CitedBancoult, Regina (on the Application of) v Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (No 2) HL 22-Oct-2008
The claimants challenged the 2004 Order which prevented their return to their homes on the Chagos Islands. The islanders had been taken off the island to leave it for use as a US airbase. In 2004, the island was no longer needed, and payment had . .
CitedLiyange v Regina PC 1966
The appellant, who had been involved in an attempted coup in Ceylon, sought to argue that a retroactive law relating to his trial was void.
Held: The argument succeeded. The separation of powers inherent in the Constitution had been infringed, . .
CitedMisick, Regina (on the Application of) v Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Admn 1-May-2009
The former premier of the Turks and Caicos Islands sought to challenge the constitutionality of the 2009 order which was to allow suspension of parts of the Constitution and imposing a direct administration, on a final report on alleged corruption. . .
CitedLiyanage and others v The Queen PC 2-Dec-1965
The defendants appealed against their convictions for conspiracy to wage war against the Queen, and to overawe by criminal force the Government of Ceylon. It was said that the description of the offence committed had been redefied after the . .
CitedBarclay and Another, Regina (on The Application of) v Secretary of State for Justice and Others SC 22-Oct-2014
Constitutional Status of Chanel Islands considered
The Court was asked as to the role, if any, of the courts of England and Wales (including the Supreme Court) in the legislative process of one of the Channel Islands. It raised fundamental questions about the constitutional relationship between the . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.


Updated: 01 May 2022; Ref: scu.242139