Secretary of State for the Home Department v SP: CA 21 Dec 2004

The applcant, a girl aged 17 was in a young offender institution. She complained that she had been removed to segregation without first giving her chance to be heard. The respondent argued that there were sufficient post decision safeguards to ensure fairness.
Held: Modern standards of fairnesss required that she be given opportunity to be heard before the decision was taken. This did not require more than an opportunity to comment on the tentative reasons for making an order. The regime to which she was moved was substantially different. Fair treatment is part of the retributive process.
The Court emphasised both the instrumental value of enabling persons to participate in decision-making when they may be able to contribute relevant information or to test other information before the decision-maker, and the ethical value of allowing persons to participate in decision-making which concerns them and is liable to have a significant effect on their rights or interests, where they may have something to say which is relevant to the decision to be taken


Ward, Jacob, Hooper LJJ


[2004] EWCA Civ 1750, Times 21-Jan-2005




England and Wales


CitedWiseman v Borneman HL 1971
The House was asked whether natural justice required that there be an oral hearing of a determination by a tax tribunal of whether there was a prima facie case.
Held: A refusal to examine evidence submitted to a tribunal initially when there . .
CitedRegina (Howard League for Penal Reform) v Secretary of State for the Home Department QBD 29-Nov-2002
The League challenged the respondent’s statement in the Prisons’ Handbook that children held in young offender institutions were not subject to the protection of the 1989 Act.
Held: Neither the Prison Act and Rules excluded the Prison . .
CitedLloyd v McMahon HL 12-Mar-1987
The district auditor had issued a certificate under the 1982 Act surcharging the appellant councillors in the sum of 106,103, pounds being the amount of a loss incurred or deficiency caused, as the auditor found, by their wilful misconduct.
CitedRegina (Daly) v Secretary of State for the Home Department HL 23-May-2001
A prison policy requiring prisoners not to be present when their property was searched and their mail was examined was unlawful. The policy had been introduced after failures in search procedures where officers had been intimidated by the presence . .
CitedRegina v Secretary of State for Home Department Ex Parte Hickey and Others, Same Ex Parte Bamber; Same Ex Parte Malone (No 2) QBD 29-Nov-1994
The Home Secretary is obliged to disclose new evidence to a defendant before rejecting his application for a reference to Court of Appeal. The Home Secretary’s powers to refer a case back to the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) was an integral . .
CitedRegina v Deputy Governor of Parkhurst Prison, Ex parte Hague, Weldon v Home Office QBD 1990
A prisoner challenged the decision that he should be segregated under rule 43.
Held: Ralph Gibson LJ said: ‘In this case Mr Sedley acknowledged that there could not be an unqualified obligation in all cases upon the governor to allow the right . .
CitedRegina v Deputy Governor of Parkhurst Prison, Ex parte Hague CA 5-Jun-1990
A decision to segregate a prisoner under rule 43 is to be made by the governor of the prison where he is held. Taylor LJ said: ‘Apart from the urgency of decisions under r 43, there may well be other public policy grounds for not giving reasons in . .
CitedRegina v Deputy Governor of Parkhurst Prison, Ex parte Hague, Weldon v Home Office HL 24-Jul-1991
The prisoner challenged the decision to place him in segregation under Prison Rule 43. Under rule 43(1) the initial power to segregate was given to ‘the governor’. The case arose from the fact that the governor of one prison had purported to . .
CitedRegina v Life Assurance Unit Trust Regulatory Authority Organisation Ltd, ex parte Ross 1993
There are circumstances where it is not possible to allow representations to be made before the decision, in which case they should be allowed afterwards. . .
CitedRegina v Secretary of State for the Home Department ex parte Doody and Others HL 25-Jun-1993
A mandatory lifer is to be permitted to suggest the period of actual sentence to be served. The Home Secretary must give reasons for refusing a lifer’s release. What fairness requires in any particular case is ‘essentially an intuitive judgment’, . .
CitedRegina v Secretary of State for Home Department ex parte Mehmet and O’Connor Admn 9-Feb-1999
Prisoners challenged their detention within Close Supervision Centres, saying that fairness required they be told the reasons and be given the opportunity to make representations against the decision.
Held: Fairness did not require an . .
CitedRegina v Secretary of State for the Home Department and Another, Ex Parte Allen CA 10-Mar-2000
No right arose in favour of a prisoner to see the document upon which a decision to refuse him early release under a home detention and curfew scheme had been made, nor to make representations before completion of the assessment. No procedural . .
CitedRegina (Hirst) v Secretary of State for the Home Department CA 8-Mar-2001
The prisoner had been re-categorised and transferred to a higher category prison.
Held: A life sentence serving prisoner, who had served the tariff period, and was moving into the period of discretionary detention, was entitled to be informed . .

Cited by:

CitedKing, Regina (on The Application of) v Secretary of State for Justice CA 27-Mar-2012
In each case the prisoners challenged their transfer to cellular confinement or segregation within prison or YOI, saying that the transfers infringed their rights under Article 6, saying that domestic law, either in itself or in conjunction with . .
CitedBourgass and Another, Regina (on The Application of) v Secretary of State for Justice SC 29-Jul-2015
The Court considered the procedures when a prisoner is kept in solitary confinement, otherwise described as ‘segregation’ or ‘removal from association’, and principally whether decisions to keep the appellants in segregation for substantial periods . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.


Updated: 28 June 2022; Ref: scu.220667