R Cruickshank Limited v The Chief Constable of Kent County Constabulary: CA 13 Dec 2002

The claimant had sought damages from the defendant for unlawful interference with contractual relations, and for misfeasance in public office. It now appealed against an order striking out its claim. It claimed that the police had unlawfully abused their power causing it damage to its goodwill and business.
Held: Three Rivers established two forms of claim for public misfeasance, acts of bad faith targeted against the claimant, and acting knowingly in excess of his powers, and causing damage to the claimant. Here the alternative claim of interfering in contractual relations was hopeless, following Lhonro. It would be wrong to water down the requirements of public misfeasance by reference to an economic tort. The case for public misfeasance was not unfit for trial, and should be allowed to proceed.


Lord Justice Brooke, Lord Justice Sedley, Lord Justice Tuckey


Times 27-Dec-2002, [2002] EWCA Civ 1840




England and Wales


CitedThree Rivers District Council and Others v Governor and Company of The Bank of England (No 3) HL 22-Mar-2001
Misfeasance in Public Office – Recklessness
The bank sought to strike out the claim alleging misfeasance in public office in having failed to regulate the failed bank, BCCI.
Held: Misfeasance in public office might occur not only when a company officer acted to injure a party, but also . .
CitedLonrho plc v Fayed CA 1989
There had been a battle to purchase the share capital of the House of Fraser which owned Harrods. Lonrho alleged that the Fayed brothers had perpetrated a fraud on the Secretary of State, and thereby secured permission to buy the company without a . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Police, Torts – Other

Updated: 25 October 2022; Ref: scu.178444