The defendant sought to have the claim struck out. The prisoner said that the defendant’s probation officer had through misfeasance in public office arranged for his transfer back to secure conditions from open ones. The parole board panel had found ‘It was clear to the panel that the decision to return Mr Houchin to closed conditions, both as recorded by . . and on any other basis not then considered, was flawed, unreasonable, ill-motivated and invalid in a public law sense.’ The Secretary of state had rejected the finding, and the defendant had found no evidence to support the allegations against the officer.
Held: The claim was struck out. There was no reason for the officer to dislike the claimant, nor to seek to defend the Service as alleged. Others had reached similar conclusions to his own. The claimant had no prospect of succeeding.
 EWHC 794 (QB)
England and Wales
Cited – Racz v Home Office HL 17-Dec-1993
The Home Office can be liable for the actions of prison officers which amounted to an official misfeasance. The principles of vicarious liability apply as much to misfeasance in public office as to other torts involving malice, knowledge or . .
Cited – Three Rivers District Council and Others v Governor and Company of The Bank of England HL 18-May-2000
The applicants alleged misfeasance against the Bank of England in respect of the regulation of a bank.
Held: The Bank could not be sued in negligence, but the tort of misfeasance required clear evidence of misdeeds. The action was now properly . .
Cited – Hughes and others (By Their Litigation Friend) v Richards (Trading As Colin Richards and Co ) CA 9-Mar-2004
Parents and their children claimed against a tax adviser for negligence in relation to setting up an offshore trust. The defendant applied to strike out the children’s claim on the basis that the defendant owed them no duty of care and only the . .
Cited – Watkins v Home Office and others HL 29-Mar-2006
The claimant complained of misfeasance in public office by the prisons for having opened and read protected correspondence whilst he was in prison. The respondent argued that he had suffered no loss. The judge had found that bad faith was . .
Cited – Karagozlu v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis CA 12-Dec-2006
The claimant made a claim for misfeasance in public office. The defendant argued that such a claim required proof of special damage. The claimant said that the deprivation of liberty amounted to such damage. Whilst serving a prison sentence the . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Prisons, Torts – Other
Updated: 12 January 2022; Ref: scu.472249