Gillan and Another, Regina (on the Application of) v Commissioner of the Police for the Metropolis and Another: Admn 31 Oct 2003

The applicants challenged by way of judicial review the way they had been stopped and searched under the Act. They attended a demonstration. The search revealed nothing suspicious. General authorisations for such searches had been issued under the Act.
Held: The section should not be read so as to restrict the power to issue authorisations for searches only when there was some imminent threat. Lord Justice Brooke said: ‘the powers are so sweeping and far beyond anything ever permitted by common law powers – the police can stop and search anybody at any time anywhere without any prior grounds of suspicion within a huge metropolitan district – it behoves the police to take particular care to ensure that these powers are not used arbitrarily or against any particular group of people’ and
‘There is just enough evidence available to persuade us that in the absence of any evidence that these powers were being habitually used on occasions which might represent symbolic targets, the arms fair was an occasion which concerned the police sufficiently to persuade them that the use of section 44 powers was needed ‘ The claim failed.
‘It seems to us that a lot of the trouble in this case has arisen because what should be a very quick random stop/search procedure has been elevated into a slow bureaucratic process that would be far more appropriate for a stop/search where there is reasonable cause for police suspicion. No wonder people got annoyed. ‘


Lord Justice Brooke And Mr Justice Maurice Kay


[2003] EWHC 2545 (Admin), Times 05-Nov-2003, [2003] All ER (D) 526




Terrorism Act 2000 44, European Convention on Human Rights 5 8 10


England and Wales


CitedPadfield v Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food HL 14-Feb-1968
Exercise of Ministerial Discretion
The Minister had power to direct an investigation in respect of any complaint as to the operation of any marketing scheme for agricultural produce. Milk producers complained about the price paid by the milk marketing board for their milk when . .
CitedSecretary of State for the Home Department v Rehman HL 11-Oct-2001
The applicant, a Pakistani national had entered the UK to act as a Muslim priest. The Home Secretary was satisfied that he was associated with a Muslim terrorist organisation, and refused indefinite leave to remain. The Home Secretary provided both . .
CitedRegina v British Broadcasting Corporation ex parte Pro-life Alliance HL 15-May-2003
The Alliance was a political party seeking to air its party election broadcast. The appellant broadcasters declined to broadcast the film on the grounds that it was offensive, being a graphical discussion of the processes of abortion.
Held: . .

Cited by:

Appeal fromGillan and Quinton, Regina (on the Application of) v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis and Another CA 29-Jul-2004
The appellants had challenged the lawfulness of being stopped and searched by police. The officers relied on an authorisation made under the 2000 Act. They had been on their way to attending an arms fair, intending to demonstrate.
Held: The . .
At first instanceGillan, Regina (on the Application of) v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis and Another HL 8-Mar-2006
The defendants said that the stop and search powers granted under the 2000 Act were too wide, and infringed their human rights. Each had been stopped when innocently attending demonstrations in London, and had been effectively detained for about . .
At First InstanceGillan and Quinton v The United Kingdom ECHR 10-Jun-2008
The court set the questions to be answered later in response to the complaint as to the use of stop and search powers by the British police. . .
At First InstanceGillan and Quinton v The United Kingdom ECHR 12-Jan-2010
The claimants had been stopped by the police using powers in the 2000 Act. They were going to a demonstration outside an arms convention. There was no reason given for any suspicion that the searches were needed.
Held: The powers given to the . .
At First InstanceGillan and Quinton v The United Kingdom ECHR 12-May-2009
(Admissibility and Summary) . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Police, Human Rights

Updated: 08 June 2022; Ref: scu.187314