The appellant challenged being struck off the medical register. He had given expert evidence in a criminal case which was found misleading and to have contributed to a wrongful conviction for murder.
Held: The evidence though mistaken was given in good faith and the penalty was disproportionate and was set aside. The evidence which had been given was privileged, and he was not to suffer a penalty having given it: ‘the possibility of disciplinary proceedings based on a complaint by someone affected by the evidence given has a serious deterrent effect. It is in those circumstances difficult to follow why the public policy based on the need to protect the administration of justice should not prevent disciplinary proceedings. They can result in penalties which are more serious than an award of damages . .’ The conclusion that he had acted in good faith and that there was no evidence of calculated or wilful failure to use his best endeavours to provide evidence precluded a finding of serious professional misconduct.
 EWHC 146 (Admin), Times 22-Feb-2006,  1 WLR 1452, (2006) 89 BMLR 143,  Lloyds Rep Med 233,  1 FLR 1161,  2 All ER 329,  2 FCR 777,  ACD 43
England and Wales
Cited – Evans v London Hospital Medical College and Others 1981
The defendants employed by the first defendant carried out a post mortem on the plaintiff’s infant son. They found concentrations of morphine and told the police. The plaintiff was charged with the murder of her son. After further investigation no . .
Cited – Rex v Skinner 1772
Lord Mansfield said: ‘Neither party, witness, counsel jury or judge can be put to answer, orally or criminally, for words spoken in office.’ Where words are spoken which are opprobrious or irrelevant to the case, the court will take notice of them . .
Cited – Watson v M’Ewan HL 1905
A claim was brought against a medical witness in respect of statements made in preparation of a witness statement and similar statements subsequently made in court. The appellant was a doctor of medicine who had been retained by the respondent in . .
Cited – Darker v Chief Constable of The West Midlands Police HL 1-Aug-2000
The plaintiffs had been indicted on counts alleging conspiracy to import drugs and conspiracy to forge traveller’s cheques. During the criminal trial it emerged that there had been such inadequate disclosure by the police that the proceedings were . .
Cited – Rees v Sinclair 1974
(New Zealand Court of Appeal) The court discussed the indemnity given to witnesses: ‘But I cannot narrow the protection to what is done in court: it must be wider than that and include some pre-trial work. Each piece of before-trial work should, . .
Cited – Hussein v William Hill Group 2004
Cited – Marrinan v Vibart CA 2-Jan-1962
Two police officers gave evidence in a criminal prosecution of others, that the plaintiff, a barrister, had behaved improperly by obstructing a police officer in the execution of his duty and subsequently gave similar evidence at an inquiry before . .
Cited – Roy v Prior HL 1970
The court considered an alleged tort of maliciously procuring an arrest. The plaintiff had been arrested under a bench warrant issued as a result of evidence given by the defendant. He sued the defendant for damages for malicious arrest.
Held: . .
Cited – Whitehouse v Jordan HL 17-Dec-1980
The plaintiff sued for brain damage suffered at birth by use of forceps at the alleged professional negligence of his doctor. The Court of Appeal had reversed the judge’s finding in his favour.
Held: In this case most of the evidence at issue . .
Cited – Roylance v The General Medical Council (No 2) PC 24-Mar-1999
(Medical Act 1983) Dr Roylance was the chief executive of a hospital in which there had been excessive mortality rates of children who underwent cardiac surgery and had failed to take steps to deal with the problem.
Held: A doctor who carried . .
Cited – Philip Gerald Stanton; Sylvia Mary Stanton v Brian F Callaghan; Brian F Callaghan and Associates (a Firm); Brian F Callaghan and Partners (a Firm) CA 8-Jul-1998
The defendant, a structural engineer, was retained by the plaintiffs in a claim against insurers for the costs of remedying subsidence of the plaintiffs’ house. He advised total underpinning for andpound;77,000, but later while preparing a joint . .
Cited – Polivite Ltd v Commercial Union Assurance Co Plc 1987
An expert must act giving ‘independent assistance to the Court by way of objective unbiased opinion in relation to matters within his expertise.’ . .
Cited – In Re J 1990
An expert witness should state the facts or assumption upon which his opinion is based. He should not omit to consider material facts which could detract from his concluded opinion. An expert witness should provide independent assistance to the . .
Cited – Regina v Doheny, Adams CACD 31-Jul-1996
The court set out the procedure for the introduction of DNA evidence in criminal trials. In particular the court explained the ‘Prosecutor’s Fallacy’ when using statistical evidence. The significance of the DNA evidence will depend critically upon . .
Cited – X (Minors) v Bedfordshire County Council; M (A Minor) and Another v Newham London Borough Council; Etc HL 29-Jun-1995
Liability in Damages on Statute Breach to be Clear
Damages were to be awarded against a Local Authority for breach of statutory duty in a care case only if the statute was clear that damages were capable of being awarded. in the ordinary case a breach of statutory duty does not, by itself, give rise . .
Cited – National Justice Compania Naviera S A v Prudential Assurance Company Ltd (‘The Ikarian Reefer’) 1993
Cresswell J spoke of the nature of the duty owed by expert witnesses: ‘The duties and responsibilities of expert witnesses in civil cases include the following:
1. Expert evidence presented to the Court should be, and should be seen to be, the . .
Cited – Derby and Co Ltd v Weldon (Nos 3 and 4) CA 1990
The plaintiff had obtained an asset freezing order against a defendant Panamanian Company, which now appealed saying that it was inappropriate to make such an order where the company had no assets in the jurisdiction.
Held: The appeal failed. . .
Appeal from – General Medical Council v Professor Sir Roy Meadow, Attorney General CA 26-Oct-2006
The GMC appealed against the dismissal of its proceedings for professional misconduct against the respondent doctor, whose expert evidence to a criminal court was the subject of complaint. The doctor said that the evidence given by him was . .
Cited – Southall v The General Medical Council Admn 22-May-2009
The doctor appealed against the erasure of his name from the register of medical practitioners after a finding of serious professional misconduct. There had been earlier similar findings, but based on different allegations.
Held: The doctor’s . .
These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 28 January 2021; Ref: scu.238561