Regina (A) v Chief Constable of C: QBD 2001

The court considered the disclosure of unproved allegations as between police forces. Police authorities had disclosed information concerning the claimant to each other and in one case to a local authority. The information related to allegations of criminal conduct by the applicant towards children. These had been investigated but never prosecuted. The information was divulged to a prospective employer following the application by the claimant for a job as a primary school teacher.
Held: The court should consider whether a ‘pressing need’ could be shown.
There was no ‘decision’ such as to attract an obligation requiring to be judged according to the rules of procedural fairness (and therefore by implication no Article 6(1) claim): ‘What then of the position of the D constabulary when the information was passed by them to the local education authority? There cannot be the slightest doubt that the local education authority had a lawful interest and a ‘pressing’ need to receive the information which was in the possession of the county police since it was or could be important as affecting the decision which it was required to make. In one sense, the local education authority was the body best qualified to decide what, if anything, it would make of the information with which it was being provided. If it was uncertain about the strength of the complaints and needed to know more in order that it could make an informed decision, it was always at liberty to ask for assistance from the communicating police force for its opinion about that matter. It would thereafter be for it to decide whether, or to what extent, the non-conviction material should inform its decision. Before it did, it would, of course, have to provide the applicant with at least the gist of that information and offer him the opportunity to make representations about it.’


Turner J


[2001] 1 WLR 461


England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedDr D, Regina (on the Application of) v Secretary of State for Health CA 19-Jul-2006
The doctor complained of the use of Alert letters where he was suspected of sexual abuse of patients, but the allegations were unsubstantiated. He complained particularly that he had been acquitted in a criminal court and then also by the . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Police, Human Rights, Information

Updated: 14 May 2022; Ref: scu.244746