Regina on the Application of PW v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis, The London Borough of Richmond-Upon-Thames: Admn 20 Jul 2005

W, a child of 14 sought judicial review of an order to remove persons under the age of 16 from dispersal areas in Richmond.
Held: The issue was whether the power given to police to remove youths was permissive or coercive. The power given ‘is exercisable whenever a person who is believed on reasonable grounds to be under 16 years of age is found between the hours of 9pm and 6am in a dispersal area and the criteria set out in s 30(6)(b) are fulfilled. There is no need for the constable (or CSO) to be satisfied that the child would otherwise be likely to suffer significant harm. ‘ The power given to the police is a power to take them home. ‘Section 30(6) merely confers on the police a very welcome express power to use police resources to take such a person home if he is willing to be taken home. ‘ That power does not include a power to remove a child without his consent. A power to do what would otherwise be tortious behaviour would require clear words, which had not been used.


Brooke LJ, Mitting J


Times 21-Jul-2005, [2005] 1 WLR 3706, [2005] EWHC 1586 (Admin), [2005] 3 All ER 749




Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003 30 31, Children Act 1989 46


England and Wales


CitedMorris v Beardmore HL 1981
Parliament does not intend to authorise tortious conduct except by express provision. It is not for the courts to alter the balance between individual rights and the powers of public officials. The right of privacy is fundamental.
Lord Scarman . .
CitedRegina v Special Commissioner And Another, ex parte Morgan Grenfell and Co Ltd HL 16-May-2002
The inspector issued a notice requiring production of certain documents. The respondents refused to produce them, saying that they were protected by legal professional privilege.
Held: Legal professional privilege is a fundamental part of . .
CitedB (A Minor) v Director of Public Prosecutions HL 23-Feb-2000
Prosecution to prove absence of genuine belief
To convict a defendant under the 1960 Act, the prosecution had the burden of proving the absence of a genuine belief in the defendant’s mind that the victim was 14 or over. The Act itself said nothing about any mental element, so the assumption must . .
See AlsoW, Regina (on the Application Of) v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis and others Admn 20-Jul-2005
. .

Cited by:

CitedSingh and others v Chief Constable of West Midlands Police QBD 4-Nov-2005
A play was presented which was seen by many Sikhs as offensive. Protesters were eventually ordered to disperse under s30 of the 2003 Act. The defendants appealed their convictions for having breached that order, saying that it interfered with their . .
Appeal fromRegina (W) v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis and Another CA 11-May-2006
The Commissioner appealed against a declaration that an authorisation given for creation of a dispersal area was unlawful.
Held: The proceedings appeared at first to be merely hypothetical, but the issue as to whether a police officer had use . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Police, Torts – Other

Updated: 23 July 2022; Ref: scu.228925