D v D (Access: Contempt: Committal): CA 9 Nov 1990

An order granting custody did not require a person to or abstain from a particular act, and could not therefore be the source of a comittal for contempt of it.
Orse ; Dempster v Dempster

Citations:

[1991] 2 FLR 34, Independent 09-Nov-1990

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedIn re S-C (Children) v H-C CA 28-Jan-2010
The appellant appealed against an order finding her in contempt of court for breach of a court order. The finding had been made in the absence of the parties. She had reported to the police a distorted version of a medical report in the children . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 22 May 2022; Ref: scu.396469

Fort Locks Self Storage Limited v Deakin: CA 2017

Citations:

[2017] EWCA Civ 404

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedRe Yaxley-Lennon (Aka Tommy Robinson) CACD 1-Aug-2018
Need for clarity in Contempt Allegation
The defendant appealed from his convictions for contempt of court, being said to have broadcast details of criminal prosecutions despite orders to the contrary. He argued that any failure of procedure was fatal to the prosecutions.
Held: As to . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 21 May 2022; Ref: scu.624164

M v P (Contempt of Court: Committal Order): CA 1992

Orse Butler v Butler
Failure to observe the proper procedures for service is not necessarily fatal to the lawfulness of a committal order. In each of the two appeals against committal orders comma the contemnor complained of non-compliance with the rules of service. In the first, the order had been served by the court rather than served personally by the applicant. In the second the contemnor complained that contrary to order 29 rule 115 no order had been served on him and that it was on the wrong court form.
Held: dismissing the appeals. A failure to observe proper service procedures was not necessarily fatal to the lawfulness of the order; the court exercising it’s discretion under Section 13(3) of the 1960 Act, had to take into account the interests of those affected by the content and the need to maintain its authority. Since neither contemnor had suffered injustice the orders would stand despite the irregularities.
Lord Donaldson of Lymington said: ‘In all contempt cases, justice requires the court to take account of the interests of at least three categories of person, namely, (a) the contemnor (b) the ‘victim’ of the contempt and (c) other users of the court for whom the maintenance of the authority of the court is of supreme importance. The interests of the alleged contemnor require that he should have the right to be informed of the charges which he has to meet, to be advised and represented if he so wishes (subject to his being eligible for legal aid or otherwise able to finance his defence), to be given a full and fair opportunity of meeting those charges and, if found guilty of contempt of court, to be informed in sufficiently clear terms of what has been found against him. In all these cases the court has been concerned to ensure that these fundamental requirements are met in the way in which, particularly in the case of the county courts, they are intended to be and should be met. However, we have tended to overlook the fact that they may in some circumstance be met in other ways. Whilst this court should always be quick to identify and condemn any departure from the proper procedures, the interests of the victim and of maintaining the authority of the courts require that in deciding what use to make of its powers under section 13(3) of the Act of 1960 this court should ask itself whether, notwithstanding such a departure, the contemnor has suffered any injustice. It does not follow that he has, nor does it follow that the proper course is to quash the order. If he has not suffered any injustice the committal order should stand, subject if necessary to variation of the order to take account of any technical or procedural defects. In other cases it may be possible to do justice between the parties by exercising the court’s power under section 13(3) by making ‘such other order may be just.’ If the circumstances are such that justice requires the committal order to be quashed amongst the options available is that of ordering a retrial . .’
Lord Donaldson held: ‘In all contempt cases, justice requires the court to take account of the interests of at least three categories of persons, namely, (a) the contemnor (b) the ‘victim’ of the contempt and (c) other users of the court for whom the maintenance of the authority of the court is of supreme importance.’

Judges:

Lord Donaldson of Lymington MR

Citations:

[1993] Fam 167, [1992] 4 All ER 833, [1992] 3 WLR 813

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Cited by:

Dictum ApprovedNicholls v Nicholls CA 20-Dec-1996
The formalities of committal proceedings are to be strictly observed, but a breach of the formalities may be overlooked if it does not affect the justice of the case.
Lord Woolf MR considered the discretion given to a court to commit for . .
CitedRe Yaxley-Lennon (Aka Tommy Robinson) CACD 1-Aug-2018
Need for clarity in Contempt Allegation
The defendant appealed from his convictions for contempt of court, being said to have broadcast details of criminal prosecutions despite orders to the contrary. He argued that any failure of procedure was fatal to the prosecutions.
Held: As to . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 21 May 2022; Ref: scu.624163

Re West: CACD 17 Jul 2014

W, a barrister, appealed against a conviction for contempt of court. He had declined to comply with the directions asked of him by the judge at a pre-trial hearing, saying that the client’s instructions that he was not guilty were sufficient. He was found to have acted in contempt of court in refusing unreasonably to attend a hearing in a criminal case when he had been ordered so to do. His punishment was a fine of pounds 500.
Held: The Court overturned the finding of contempt because the alleged contemnor had not been served with a notice in advance of the hearing as required by the Rules.
Sir Brian Leveson P observed: ‘While Mr West was thus made aware in advance of the hearing that contempt of court would be considered, the notices provided clearly fell short of the procedural requirements set out in the Crim PR. In the normal course, compliance with the strict provisions of the Crim PR can be waived by the parties or the court; in cases of alleged contempt, however, we have no doubt that strict observance of the provisions is essential. As Mr Cox observed, the contempt jurisdiction is a powerful tool which can directly impact on the liberty of the subject. Compliance with the Crim PR allows the ‘charge’ to be fully formulated and beyond doubt; it provides a structure which forms the four corners of what is in issue and it avoids the very criticism that Mr Cox did advance in this case.
In the circumstances, given the significance of the jurisdiction of contempt of court, we have come to the conclusion that this failure of process invalidates the conclusion that the judge reached. We recognise that it is likely to have made little difference but we are not prepared to assert that; it is far more important to underline the vital importance, where issues of contempt arise in circumstances of this nature, of following the approach laid down by the Crim PR.’

Judges:

Sir Brian Leveson P QBD, Patterson DBE J, Sir Richard Henriques

Citations:

[2014] EWCA Crim 1480, [2015] 1 WLR 109, [2014] WLR(D) 321, [2014] 2 Cr App R 28

Links:

Bailii, WLRD

Statutes:

Administration of Justice Act 1960 13, Criminal Procedure Rules

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Citing:

CitedMorris v Crown Office CA 1970
The applicants had been engaged in a calculated and coordinated campaign of disruption of the court.
Held: ‘The archaic description of these proceedings as ‘contempt of court’ is in my view unfortunate and misleading. It suggests that they are . .
CitedPorter and Weeks v Magill HL 13-Dec-2001
Councillors Liable for Unlawful Purposes Use
The defendant local councillors were accused of having sold rather than let council houses in order to encourage an electorate which would be more likely to be supportive of their political party. They had been advised that the policy would be . .

Cited by:

CitedRe Yaxley-Lennon (Aka Tommy Robinson) CACD 1-Aug-2018
Need for clarity in Contempt Allegation
The defendant appealed from his convictions for contempt of court, being said to have broadcast details of criminal prosecutions despite orders to the contrary. He argued that any failure of procedure was fatal to the prosecutions.
Held: As to . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court, Legal Professions

Updated: 20 May 2022; Ref: scu.534425

Regina v Sherwood, ex parte The Telegraph Group plc and Others: CACD 12 Jun 2001

When a court considered ordering a restriction on reporting of a case until after it was concluded, it had a three stage test to apply. First, would the reporting create a not insubstantial risk of prejudice. If there was no such risk, an order could not be made. Second, would an order reduce or remove the threat, and could the threat of harm be achieved by some lesser order. Only then could a court come to ask whether the degree of risk which might be run outweighed the competing duty to provide an open system of justice This was a case in which it had been necessary to order a split trial, and in addition to other factors the later trial may have been prejudiced by reporting of the first, and the order was properly made.
Longmore LJ said: ‘It is clear that the duty of the Court of Appeal when exercising this jurisdiction is not merely to review the decision of the trial judge who made the order under challenge, but rather to come to its own independent conclusions on the material placed before it’

Judges:

Longmore LJ

Citations:

Times 12-Jun-2001, Gazette 12-Jul-2001, [2001] EWCA Crim 1075, [2001] 1 WLR 1983

Links:

Bailii

Statutes:

Contempt of Court Act 1981 4(2), Criminal Justice Act 1988 159, European Convention on Human Rights 6 10

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedA and Others, Regina v; Regina v The Crown Court at the Central Criminal Court ex parte A Times Newspapers Ltd etc CACD 13-Jan-2006
The defendant was to be charged with offences associated with terrorism. He had sought stay of the trial as an abuse of process saying that he had been tortured by English US and Pakistani authorities. The judge made an order as to what parts of the . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court, Media, Human Rights, Criminal Practice

Updated: 19 May 2022; Ref: scu.88666

Memory Corporation v Sidhu (No 2): CA 3 Dec 1999

Where a party applied to court for an ex parte order, counsel had direct duties to the court, and also the supporting legal team and clients had continuing and overlapping duties. There was little to be gained by trying to analyze these things too closely to apportion blame. Here counsel had applied to and misadvised the court on the practice, and documents produced were unreliable and possibly from an unlawful source. Where a defending party risked contempt proceedings, and was ordered to file affidavit evidence in respect of that matter, any claim for privilege against self-incrimination should be made before the affidavit is made. It was inappropriate to be asked first to file the affidavit, and then to ask the court to inspect and decide. The privilege was available to be exercised in contempt proceedings within the same proceedings as the main action.
Mummery LJ said that: ‘It cannot be emphasised too strongly that in an urgent without notice hearing for a freezing order as well as for a search order or any other form of interim injunction, there is a high duty to make full, fair and accurate disclosure of material information to the court and to draw the court’s attention to significant factual, legal and procedural aspects of the case. It is the particular duty of the advocate to see that the correct legal procedures and forms are used, that a written skeleton argument and properly drafted order are prepared by him personally and lodged with the court before the oral hearing, and that at the hearing the court’s attention is drawn by him to unusual features of the evidence adduced, to the applicable law and to the formalities and procedure to be observed.’
Robert Walker LJ discussed the apparent gathering of evidence by unlawful means and said that this has not in general led to its exclusion under the English law of evidence. It was far from obvious that concerns of this nature ‘should be added to the heavy responsibilities already undertaken by lawyers who are making a without notice application, except perhaps in circumstances where the evidence in question is of central importance to the application’. Even when the evidence is of central importance, for example evidence relating to the sale of contraband goods in a case of piracy of intellectual property rights, trap orders and other conduct involving impersonation or deception have been commonplace in the Chancery Division for a century or more, and do not seem to have attracted censure.

Judges:

Mummery LJ, Robert Walker LJ

Citations:

Times 15-Feb-2000, Gazette 27-Jan-2000, Times 03-Dec-1999, [2000] EWCA Civ 9, [2000] 1 WLR 1443

Links:

Bailii

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Citing:

On Appeal fromMemory Corporation Plc and Another v Sidhu ChD 21-May-1999
Where counsel proposing an asset freezing order fails to mention a case relevant to the issue, the order need not thereby be discharged. This is as against a failure to disclose a material fact, which would lead to a discharge of the order. . .
ApprovedDubai Aluminium Co Ltd v Al Alawi and Others ComC 3-Dec-1998
The claimants had brought proceedings against their former sales manager for accepting bribes and secret commission from outsiders. In support of their claim the claimants had obtained a search and seizure order and a worldwide freezing injunction, . .

Cited by:

See AlsoMemory Corporation Plc, Datrontech Hong Kong Limited v Sukhbir Singh Sidhu, Sunsar Limited ChD 3-Nov-1999
. .
CitedJohn Louis Carter Fourie v Allan Le Roux and others CA 7-Mar-2005
The defendant’s company in South Africa had become insolvent and the claimant had recovered judgment for arrears of rent. They obtained a freezing order against the defendant. The defendant appealed saying the court did not have jurisdiction, and . .
CitedFourie v Le Roux and others HL 24-Jan-2007
The appellant, liquidator of two South African companies, had made a successful without notice application for an asset freezing order. He believed that the defendants had stripped the companies of substantial assets. The order was set aside for . .
CitedFranses v Al Assad and others ChD 26-Oct-2007
The claimant had obtained a freezing order over the proceeds of sale of a property held by solicitors. The claimant was liquidator of a company, and an allegation of wrongful trading had been made against the sole director and defendant. The . .
CitedTchenguiz and Others v Imerman CA 29-Jul-2010
Anticipating a refusal by H to disclose assets in ancillary relief proceedings, W’s brothers wrongfully accessed H’s computers to gather information. The court was asked whether the rule in Hildebrand remained correct. W appealed against an order . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Legal Professions, Litigation Practice, Human Rights, Contempt of Court

Updated: 19 May 2022; Ref: scu.83628

Belgolaise Sa v Purchandani: QBD 24 Jun 1998

Committal proceedings for contempt should be only the last resort and for flagrant refusal to disclose in breach of court order. It must be exceptional to dispense with penal notice, and impossible to do so retrospectively.

Judges:

Colman J

Citations:

Times 30-Jul-1998, Gazette 30-Sep-1998

Cited by:

CitedABC and Others v CDE and Others QBD 3-Nov-2009
The first claimant sought committal of the first defendant for contempt of court, alleging breach of a freezing order, saying that the defendant had created a sham debt and repaid it.
Held: There had been no genuine loan agreement, and the . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 18 May 2022; Ref: scu.78323

Attorney General v Independent Television News and Others: QBD 12 May 1994

A complaint of contempt of court was defeated by a deal in the trial which had worked to reduce any risk of prejudice.

Citations:

Times 12-May-1994

Statutes:

Contempt of Court Act 1981 1 2

Cited by:

Appeal fromAttorney General v Independent Television News and Others CA 1995
Leggatt LJ said that counsel for the Attorney General was correct when he submitted that: ‘It does not follow that because a risk had been created by the broadcast, further publication in newspapers would not create fresh and added risk of . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 18 May 2022; Ref: scu.77952

Attorney-General v Birmingham Post and Mail Ltd: QBD 31 Aug 1998

The questions asked of a court when staying a criminal trial because of newspaper reporting, and when assessing a contempt of court, are different, and the stay of a trial need have no implication that a contempt has been committed. The strict liability rules did not help. Simon Brown LJ said: ‘It seems to me necessarily to follow . . that one and the same publication may well constitute a contempt and yet, even though not substantially mitigated in its effect by a temporary stay and/or change of venue, not so prejudice the trial as to undermine the safety of any subsequent conviction. To my mind that can only be because section 2(2) postulates a lesser degree of prejudice than is required to make good an appeal against conviction . . In short section 2(2) is designed to avoid (and where necessary punish) publications even if they merely risk prejudicing proceedings, whereas a stay will generally only be granted where it is recognised that any subsequent conviction would otherwise be imperilled, and a conviction will only be set aside . . if it is actually unsafe.’
As to the case of Unger, Simon Brown LJ said: ‘I still think that to create a seriously arguable ground of appeal is a sufficient basis for finding strict liability contempt. Clearly it is a relevant consideration too that when a judge at first instance is deciding whether or not to grant a temporary stay. But more particularly the trial judge will ask himself: ‘is there a real danger that the jury cannot reach a just verdict, or the defendant have a fair trial?’ The judge will have to form a view as to just how seriously prejudicial the publication is, to what extent it can be mitigated by special directions, how desirable it is to avert a possible risk of a successful appeal on that ground, and how inconvenient and costly in the particular circumstances a stay would be (depending in large part no doubt on how far into the trial the problem arises).’

Judges:

Simon Brown LJ, Thomas J

Citations:

Times 31-Aug-1998, Gazette 30-Sep-1998, [1998] EWHC Admin 769, [1999] 1 WLR 361, [1999] EMLR 39, [1998] 4 All ER 49

Links:

Bailii

Statutes:

Contempt of Court Act 1981 2(2)

Citing:

CitedAttorney General v Michael Ronald Unger; Manchester Evening News Limited and Associated Newspapers Limited Admn 3-Jul-1997
Complaint was made that the defendant newspapers had caused a serious prejudice to a trial by articles published before the trial of the defendant in criminal proceedings. The defendant pleaded guilty to theft at the magistrates’ court after she had . .

Cited by:

CitedAllen v The Grimsby Telegraph and Another QBD 2-Mar-2011
The claimant sought to prevent publication of his name in the context of the making of a Sexual Offences Prevention Order (SOPO). He had been convicted of offences against sex workers. An order had been made preventing disclosure of his address, but . .
CitedHM Attorney General v MGN Ltd and Another Admn 29-Jul-2011
The police arrested a man on suspicion of the murder of a young woman. He was later released and exonerated, and a second man arrested and later convicted. Whilst the first was in custody the two defendant newspapers, the Daily Mirror and the Sun . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court, Criminal Practice, Media

Updated: 18 May 2022; Ref: scu.77978

Attorney-General v Sport Newspapers Ltd: QBD 24 May 1991

The newspaper was accused of disclosing details of the previous convictions of an absconded suspect in a murder investigation, despite a prior warning from the police that any such publication would be likely to prejudice future criminal proceedings. The Attorney General applied for the publisher to be fined and the editor to be committed to prison for contempt of court.
Held: The application was dismissed. The publishers and editor of the article could only be liable for contempt under the common law. A common law contempt was committed if there was publication of an article which caused a real risk of prejudice to the due administration of justice and it had been published with the specific intent to cause such a risk to the administration of justice. In this case, it had not been shown that the editor had had that specific intention when he caused the article to be published. As a consequence, neither the publishers nor the editor was guilty of common law contempt of court.

Citations:

[1991] 1 WLR 1194

Cited by:

CitedDallas v The United Kingdom ECHR 11-Nov-2013
The applicant challenged her conviction for contempt of court in that whilst a juror, she researched the case before her on the internet, discovering that the defendant had faced an earlier allegation broadly similar. She now said that the . .
CitedHM Solicitor General v Cox and Another QBD 27-May-2016
Applications for committal of the defendants for having taken photographs of court proceedings when their friend was being sentenced for murder and publishing them on Facebook. The SG urged that the offences had aggravating features taking the . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 18 May 2022; Ref: scu.518895

Gulf Azov Shipping Company v Idisi: CA 2001

The defendant was found to have committed a serious breach of a freezing injunction.
Held: A committal order is appropriate where there is serious contumacious flouting of orders of the court. The sentence imposed was three months suspended on condition that the contempt was purged.

Citations:

[2001] EWCA Civ 21

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Cited by:

See AlsoGulf Azov Shipping Company Ltd and Another v Idisi and others CA 25-Jan-2001
An order was made for the defendant to put up security for costs in order to pursue an appeal. The order had been for the security to be in cash. Application was now made for the security to be by way of a guarantee or bond.
Held: The proposed . .
See AlsoGulf Azov Shipping Company Ltd and Another v Chief Humphrey Irikefe Idisi and others CA 14-Feb-2001
The court granted permission to appeal. . .
See AlsoGulf Azov Shipping Company Ltd and others v Idisi and others CA 9-Mar-2001
Application for permission to appeal against assessment of damages. Refused. . .
See AlsoGulf Azov Shipping Co Ltd and others v Chief Humphrey Irikefe Idisi and others CA 15-Mar-2004
Appeal against award of costs against person who was not party to the original proceedings. . .
CitedCrystal Mews Ltd v Metterick and Others ChD 13-Nov-2006
The court considered the punishment on finding contempt proved for breach of a freezing order: ‘In contempt cases the object of the penalty is both to punish conduct in defiance of the court’s order as well as serving a coercive function by holding . .
CitedAspect Capital Ltd v Christensen ChD 29-Mar-2010
The defendant, a former senior employee had appeared dishonest and been dismissed. A search and seizure order was obtained, and the claimant now said that the defendant was in contempt of it. The parties disputed the extent of his admissions of . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 15 May 2022; Ref: scu.408559

Sony Computer Entertainment and Others v. Ball and Others: ChD 17 May 2004

Pumfrey J considered the test to be applied when a party applied for leave to commence proceedings for contempt of court against another party: ‘It seems to me, in the light of the judgment in Malgar v. Leach, that the discretion to permit applications of this nature to proceed must be exercised with very great caution. It can hardly be appropriate, it seems to me, to permit a general investigation of the facts surrounding a particular infringement in the context of contempt proceedings. That is why I have excluded from the permission which I have granted the greater number of the non-disclosures and misrepresentations alleged by the claimants.

It seems to me also that before this discretion is exercised, the claimant must satisfy the court that there is a strong case – and preferably an admitted case – that a particular misrepresentation is untrue.’ and
‘the court must be astute not to allow tenuous or argumentative applications to commit to go forward.’

Judges:

Pumfrey J

Citations:

[2004] EWHC 1192 (Ch)

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Citing:

See AlsoKabushiki Kaisha Sony Computer Entertainment Inc., Sony Computer Entertainment Europe Limited, Sony Computer Entertainment UK Limited v Ball, and others ChD 19-Jul-2004
The claimant sought summary judgment in a claim that the defendant had manufactured computer chips which would be used with their playstation computer games consoles to avoid their copy protection systems.
Held: The fact that the chips only . .
AppliedMalgar Ltd v R E Leach Engineering Ltd ChD 1-Nov-1999
The Civil Procedure Rules could not change the substantive law. It therefore remained necessary for it to be shown that in addition to knowing that what was said was false, the party had to have known that what was being said was likely to interfere . .

Cited by:

CitedKirk v Walton QBD 24-Jul-2008
The defendant sought leave to bring proceedings for contempt of court against the claimant saying that she had had no honest belief in the matters deposed in her statement of truth, in that she had substantially exaggerated her injuries.
Held: . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Intellectual Property, Contempt of Court

Updated: 15 May 2022; Ref: scu.272262

Coca-Cola Co and Another v Gilbey and Others: ChD 10 Oct 1995

A defendant in an infringement case was ordered to provide information on his associate co-infringers despite his claimed risk of violence. Such a threat was no defence to an action for contempt of court. Duress in civil cases goes as to mitigation only and does not operate as a defence.

Citations:

Times 28-Nov-1995, Independent 10-Oct-1995

Cited by:

CitedThe Coca-Cola Company and Another v Cengiz Aytacli and others ChD 30-Jan-2003
The claimant having succeeded in an action against the defendants, now sought an order for their committal for contempt, accusing them of having given false evidence, and of having failed to comply with court orders made. The defendant asserted a . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court, Intellectual Property

Updated: 15 May 2022; Ref: scu.79253

Sevketoglu v Sevketoglu: CA 21 Aug 2003

The appellant had broken two court orders, and appealed a sentence of two months imprisonment. He had been held on remand for 28 days before the court hearing.
Held: The judge should have given allowance for the time spent in custody already. In contempt cases such time would not be deducted automatically, and therefore the sentence itself should be adjusted.

Judges:

Ward, Hale LJJ

Citations:

Times 27-Nov-2003

Statutes:

Family Law Act 1996

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Citing:

CitedDelaney v Delaney CA 2-Nov-1995
A County Court judge has no power to imprison a contemnor pending a sentence decision. Time spent in custody awaiting trial for contempt would not automatically be set off against the final sentence. Proceedings for contempt can be restored after . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 12 May 2022; Ref: scu.189945

Chuck v Cremer: 19 Nov 1846

A party in contempt may give a notice of motion, although he cannot move until the contempt of court is cleared. With referance to clearing contempt the answer must be taken be sufficient until exceptions are actually allowed.
Moving upon the answer is a waiver of the contempt

Citations:

[1846] EngR 1090 (A), (1846) 1 Coop T Cott 247

Links:

Commonlii

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Citing:

See AlsoChuck v Cremer 24-Jul-1846
The plaintiff’s solicitor obtained an attachment against the defendant in default of a pleaded defence, disregarding a court order extending the period for filing the defence, which he considered to be a nullity. The order in question had been . .

Cited by:

See AlsoChuck v Cremer ([1846] EngR 1155) 1-Dec-1846
A party, who knows of a null or irregular order, should apply to discharge it. Whilst such an order is in existence it must not be disobeyed. . .
See AlsoChuck v Cremer ([1846] EngR 1154) 1-Dec-1846
An order of the court of which the party affected by it has notice, though not formally served upon him is not to be disregarded or treated by him as a nullity, however certain it may be that the order is erroneous, and would, upon a proper . .
See AlsoChuck v Cremer 9-Feb-1848
Where an action is referred by an order at nisi prius this Court has no jurisdiction to interfere with the certificate of the referee or the judgment entered to pursuant thereto, on any ground on which it would not have such jurisdiction if the . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 11 May 2022; Ref: scu.302985

Adam Phones Ltd v Goldschmidt and Others: CA 17 Aug 1999

Especially given the new emphasis on proportionality, a party who brought contempt proceedings, in the case of an inadvertent breach of an injunction, with a view solely to creating costs for the other party, could expect to face those costs themselves. It was unwise to execute a complex search and seize order on a Saturday when the defendant would not have access to legal advice, and with no supervising solicitor. The mental element required of a contemnor is not that he either intends to breach or knows that he is breaching the court order or undertaking, but only that he intended the act or omission in question, and knew the facts which made it a breach of the order.
Jacob J, applying Bhimji, said: ‘Since that judgment the Civil Procedure Rules have come into force. Their emphasis on proportionality and on looking at the overall conduct of the parties emphasises the point that applications for committal should not be seen as a way of causing costs when the defendant has honestly tried to obey the court’s order.’

Judges:

Jacob J

Citations:

Times 17-Aug-1999, [1999] 4 All ER 486

Statutes:

Civil Procedure Rules

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Citing:

AppliedBhimji v Chatwani 1991
. .

Cited by:

CitedSectorguard Plc v Dienne Plc ChD 3-Nov-2009
The claimant alleged misuse of confidential information in the form of its customer list, and its charges to them. The defendant company was run by former employees of the claimant. A later allegation was made of accessing the defendant’s private . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Litigation Practice, Contempt of Court

Updated: 10 May 2022; Ref: scu.77636

Regina v Yusuf: CACD 6 May 2003

It is essential that witnesses who had been called to attend court should do so. The public have a duty to co-operate with the courts. The appellant was called to be a witness in a murder trial. A witness summons had been served, but he did not attend.
Held: He had claimed to be afraid, but had retracted parts of his statement. The judge in this case had dealt with the appellant fairly, and there was no bias. The sentence of the maximim of three months’ imprisonment for contempt was appropriate given the deliberate act and the consequences.

Judges:

Rose LJ, Grigson Beatson JJ

Citations:

Times 12-May-2003

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Criminal Sentencing, Contempt of Court

Updated: 05 May 2022; Ref: scu.182136

PA Thomas and Co v Mould: QBD 1968

The court urged caution in the grant of an injunction to protect information for which confidence was claimed but where that claim might not succeed. O’Connor J refused to enforce by committal an injunction restraining the defendants from making use of certain confidential information acquired by them during their employment, when the nature of the alleged confidential information had not been specified in the evidence or disclosed to the court.
O’Connor J said: ‘But where parties seek to invoke the power of the court to commit people to prison and deprive them of their liberty, there has got to be quite clear certainty about it.’

Judges:

O’Connor J

Citations:

[1968] 1 All ER 963, [1968] 2 WLR 737, [1968] 2 QB 913

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedAttorney-General v Leveller Magazine Ltd HL 1-Feb-1979
The appellants were magazines and journalists who published, after committal proceedings, the name of a witness, a member of the security services, who had been referred to as Colonel B during the hearing. An order had been made for his name not to . .
CitedMarketmaker Beijing Co Ltd and others v CMC Group Plc and others QBD 8-Oct-2004
Interim injunctions had been obtained to prevent the defendants carrying out certain banking transactions.
Held: The remedy sought and the claim was extravagant and unlikely to succeed. The injunctions should be discharged. It was not at all . .
CitedBains and Others v Moore and Others QBD 15-Feb-2017
The claimant anti-asbestos campaigners complained that the defendant investigators had infringed their various rights of privacy. They now sought discovery to support the claim.
Held: the contents of the witness statements do show that it is . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Intellectual Property, Litigation Practice, Contempt of Court

Updated: 29 April 2022; Ref: scu.182810

Vik v Deutsche Bank Ag: CA 6 Sep 2018

DB sought to enforce payment of a judgment debt of US$320 million. The appellant was accused of failing to comply orders designed to facilitate collection. There was uncertainty in the rules: ‘this is a matter where consideration by the Rules Committee would be most welcome. Putting to one side the cases in which (on the view I take) permission is not required to serve an alleged contemnor out of the jurisdiction, it must be in the public interest that there should be a specific jurisdictional gateway permitting such service on an officer of a company, where the fact that he is out of the jurisdiction is no bar to the making of a committal application. ‘

Citations:

[2018] EWCA Civ 2011)

Links:

Bailii

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Jurisdiction, Contempt of Court

Updated: 27 April 2022; Ref: scu.622329

Aviva Insurance Ltd v Ahmed: QBD 21 Nov 2017

Application for the committal of the defendant for contempt of court on an allegation that the defendant brought a fraudulent claim in the county court for personal injuries alleging that he had been the victim of a genuine road traffic accident when in fact he had deliberately caused the collision in order to make a fraudulent claim. The contempt alleged consists of making false statements in documents verified by a statement of truth.

Judges:

Spencer J

Citations:

[2017] EWHC 3276 (QB)

Links:

Bailii

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Contempt of Court

Updated: 26 April 2022; Ref: scu.621130

Yaxley-Lennon (Aka Tommy Robinson), Re: CACD 1 Aug 2018

The defendant appealed from his committal for contempt of court. Being already subject to a suspended sentence of imprisonment for contempt, he had filmed court proceedings, and filmed himself commenting on a case where there had been an order for only delayed publication of the proceedings.
Held: Though the breaches had been flagrant and were not denied, the court had erred in the procedure adopted. Though a court still had power to deal summarily with a contempt in the face of the court, the usual procedure should be to invite the Attorney General to initiate proceedings.

Judges:

Lord Burnett of Maldon CJ, Turner, McGowan JJ

Citations:

[2018] EWCA Crim 1856, [2018] WLR(D) 503

Links:

Bailii, WLRD

Statutes:

Criminal Procedure Rules 48

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Contempt of Court

Updated: 26 April 2022; Ref: scu.621117

In re F (otherwise A) (A Minor) (Publication of Information): FD 1976

Citations:

[1976] 3 All ER 274, [1976] 3 WLR 307, [1977] Fam 47

Statutes:

Administration of Justice Act 1960 12(1)(a)

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Cited by:

Appeal fromIn re F (otherwise A ) (A Minor) (Publication of Information) CA 1977
An allegation of contempt was made in proceedings related to the publication by a newspaper of extracts from a report by a social worker and a report by the Official Solicitor, both prepared after the commencement and for the purpose of the wardship . .
CitedRe S (A Child) CA 10-Jul-2003
The mother of the child on behalf of whom the application was made, was to face trial for murder. The child was in care and an order was sought to restrain publiction of material which might reveal his identity, including matters arising during the . .
CitedKelly (A Minor) v British Broadcasting Corporation FD 25-Jul-2000
K, aged 16, had left home to join what was said to be a religious sect. His whereabouts were unknown. He had been made a ward of court and the Official Solicitor was appointed to represent his interests. He had sent messages to say that he was well . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Children, Media, Contempt of Court

Updated: 20 April 2022; Ref: scu.182818

Galloway v Ali-Khan: QBD 22 Mar 2018

The claimant sought the defendant be found guilty of contempt. She had formally undertaken to the court not to say anything defamatory of him, but now admitted being co-signatory to a letter from the Labour Party which she accepted was such. She sought an adjournment to allow her to get legal assistance.
Held: ‘it is an exceptional course for the court to accept admissions of guilt of what is approaching a criminal offence from an unrepresented litigation. I have concluded that this is a case where the court should do that. Ms Khan is evidently a well-educated woman with experience of courts who has had plenty of notice of the allegations against her, and an ample opportunity to seek legal representation and arrange a defence.’ The contempt was found.

Judges:

Warby J

Citations:

[2018] EWHC 780 (QB)

Links:

Bailii

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

contempt of Court

Updated: 13 April 2022; Ref: scu.609109

Practice Direction (Family Proceedings: Committal): 2001

Citations:

[2001] 1 WLR 1253

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedIn re G (a Child) (Contempt: Committal) CA 10-Apr-2003
The appellant had been made subject to a suspended committal to prison. He was involved with children proceedings, and had published details on the Internet which would make the social worker traceable.
Held: Where a contempt was not committed . .
CitedHammerton v Hammerton CA 23-Mar-2007
The husband appealed against his committal for contempt of a court order in family proceedings. The court had heard the wife’s application for his committal at the same time as his application for contact with the children.
Held: The appeal . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Family, Human Rights, Contempt of Court

Updated: 12 April 2022; Ref: scu.250481

Regina v Calum I MacLeod: CACD 29 Nov 2000

The defendant had approached a prosecution witness after she had completed her evidence, but before she left, and challenged her on the basis that she had been lying. On the following day the judge considered whether his behaviour was a contempt of court, and having found it proved, and sentenced him. In this case, and the judge was not himself a witness to what had happened, and it was appropriate for him to act as an independent tribunal, and it was also necessary to act quickly and decisively. The Article 6 right to a fair trial did not add, in these circumstances, to the requirements which already applied to an English courts. The judge should, however, have requested prosecuting counsel to lead the witness through her evidence.

Citations:

Times 20-Dec-2000

Human Rights, Criminal Practice, Contempt of Court, Crime

Updated: 10 April 2022; Ref: scu.88549

Regina v Westminster City Council Ex Parte Castelli: QBD 14 Aug 1995

An applicant, who was HIV positive, wished his identity to be concealed.
Held: Some publicity had already occurred A Contempt of Court anonymity order was not to be used to protect a litigant’s privacy.

Judges:

Latham J

Citations:

Times 14-Aug-1995, [1995] 7 Admin LR 840

Statutes:

Contempt of Court Act 1981 11

Citing:

CitedScott v Scott HL 5-May-1913
Presumption in Favour of Open Proceedings
There had been an unauthorised dissemination by the petitioner to third parties of the official shorthand writer’s notes of a nullity suit which had been heard in camera. An application was made for a committal for contempt.
Held: The House . .
CitedAttorney-General v Leveller Magazine Ltd HL 1-Feb-1979
The appellants were magazines and journalists who published, after committal proceedings, the name of a witness, a member of the security services, who had been referred to as Colonel B during the hearing. An order had been made for his name not to . .

Cited by:

CitedRegina v Legal Aid Board ex parte T, a Firm of Solicitors Admn 25-Jun-1997
The firm of solicitors making an application for judicial review of the decision of the Board to institute criminal proceedings against them sought anonymity, saying that procedure which might prove them innocent would nevertheless damage their . .
CitedRegina v Legal Aid Board ex parte Kaim Todner (a Firm of Solicitors) CA 10-Jun-1998
Limitation on Making of Anonymity Orders
A firm of solicitors sought an order for anonymity in their proceedings against the LAB, saying that being named would damage their interests irrespective of the outcome.
Held: The legal professions have no special part in the law as a party . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court, Media

Updated: 10 April 2022; Ref: scu.88298

Regina v Selby Justices, ex parte Daltry: QBD 1 Dec 2000

If a court laid a charge of contempt of court, legal aid should normally be granted to the defendant. It was wrong, first to hear representations which led to the charge of contempt being withdrawn, and then to decide that legal aid should not be granted because it was no longer necessary. The effect of this practice would be that legal aid would only be available for sentence for contempt. Contempt is a potentially serious matter and a defendant will generally require representation.

Citations:

Gazette 07-Dec-2000, Times 01-Dec-2000

Legal Aid, Contempt of Court

Updated: 10 April 2022; Ref: scu.88000

Regina v Tamworth Justices Ex Parte Walsh: QBD 3 Mar 1994

The peremptory committal of a solicitor for an insult was wrong. Alternatives were available.

Citations:

Times 03-Mar-1994, [1994] COD 277

Cited by:

CitedHaw and Another v City of Westminster Magistrates’ Court Admn 12-Dec-2007
The defendants appealed convictions for contempt of court, on the basis of having wilfully interrupted the court. The respondent said that no appeal lay.
Held: The statute was ambiguous, and ‘there can be no good reason why a person convicted . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 10 April 2022; Ref: scu.88146

Regina v Newtonabbey Magistrates Court Ex Parte Belfast Telegraph Newspapers Ltd: CANI 27 Aug 1997

When the defendant charged with indecent assault was remanded on bail to await trial, the magistrate ordered that there should be no report of the proceedings at that stage because of the defendant’s concerns that publicity would lead to his being attacked; this would frustrate the administration of justice because he might no longer be able to face trial. The newspaper objected.
Held: Magistrates cannot prevent publication of proceedings outside the strict limits of the Act even if could interfere with course of justice. ‘The use of the words ‘some other public interest’ indicates that Lord Diplock had in mind the protection of the public interest in the administration of justice rather than the private welfare of those caught up in that administration.’

Citations:

Times 27-Aug-1997, 1997 NILR 309, [1997] NI QBD 309

Statutes:

Contempt of Court Act 1981 4(2)

Cited by:

Appeal fromBelfast Telegraph Newspapers Ltd, In the Matter of CANI 3-Apr-2001
. .
CitedHarper and Another, Regina (on The Application of) v Aldershot Magistrates Court Admn 8-Jun-2010
Police defendants not to have addresses withheld
The defendants, senior police officers were accused of misconduct in public office, being said to have sought improperly to interfere in prosecutions for speeding. They appealed against refusal by the magistrates to have their addresses protected. . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court, Northern Ireland

Updated: 09 April 2022; Ref: scu.87436

Re B ( A Minor)(Contempt: Evidence): FD 6 Dec 1995

The lack of an obligation on an alleged contemnor to testify did not mean that he could avoid providing an affidavit.

Citations:

Gazette 06-Dec-1995

Cited by:

CitedIn re S-C (Children) v H-C CA 28-Jan-2010
The appellant appealed against an order finding her in contempt of court for breach of a court order. The finding had been made in the absence of the parties. She had reported to the police a distorted version of a medical report in the children . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 09 April 2022; Ref: scu.85718

Practice Direction (Magistrates’ Court: Contempt): QBD 11 Jun 2001

Detailed guidance was given by the court as to the way in which magistrates should deal with persons refusing to give evidence, or otherwise behaving in a way which might be a contempt of court. They should cease to use their power to bind a defendant over. The magistrates should consider detention of the person until he could be dealt with without disrupting the court, but in any event progress should be made within the day. He must be offered legal aid and representation. In the event of a not guilty plea different magistrates should hear the case. The sentence should allow for time spent in custody, and be no more than was necessary.

Citations:

Times 11-Jun-2001

Magistrates, Contempt of Court

Updated: 09 April 2022; Ref: scu.84897

Practice Direction (Arresting Officer: Attendance): FD 19 Jan 2000

The direction deals with the circumstances in which the officer who makes an arrest in family proceedings for the breach of a non-molestation or similar order should be asked to attend court personally on the hearing regarding that breach. Unless the circumstances of the arrest itself appeared to be an issue, or unless the officer could give evidence as a witness to the circumstances leading up to the arrest, the officer need not normally be called.

Citations:

Times 19-Jan-2000, Gazette 03-Feb-2000

Statutes:

Family Law Act 1996 47(7)

Family, Contempt of Court

Updated: 09 April 2022; Ref: scu.84844

MGN Pension Trustees Ltd v Bank of America National Trust and Savings Association Etc: ChD 15 Dec 1994

There should be no refusal to allow reporting of civil proceedings where criminal proceedings were not likely to be prejudiced. The critical question in relation to section 4(2) is whether there is a substantial risk of prejudice to the administration of justice which could be avoided by the making of a postponing order. The court enumerated the questions to be asked on whether reporting of proceedings to be delayed for prejudice.

Citations:

Independent 15-Dec-1994, Times 21-Dec-1994, [1995] 2 All ER 355

Statutes:

Contempt of Court Act 1981 4(2)

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedAllen v The Grimsby Telegraph and Another QBD 2-Mar-2011
The claimant sought to prevent publication of his name in the context of the making of a Sexual Offences Prevention Order (SOPO). He had been convicted of offences against sex workers. An order had been made preventing disclosure of his address, but . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 09 April 2022; Ref: scu.83680

Miller and Another v Scorey and Others: ChD 2 Apr 1996

Using disclosed documents in second action with similar parties may be a contempt, depending significantly upon whether any undertaking, express or implied was given. The court struck out an action where proceedings were commenced in reliance on documents produced on discovery in an earlier action, where the consent of the court had not been obtained prior to the commencement of the second action.

Judges:

Rimer J

Citations:

Times 02-Apr-1996, [1996] 1 WLR 1122

Cited by:

CitedPreston Borough Council v McGrath CA 12-May-2000
The defendant had been investigated for fraud against the claimant. He had disclosed documents to the police, but now complained at their use in the civil proceedings against him.
Held: The document had not been given to the police under . .
CitedDi Placito v Slater and others CA 19-Dec-2003
The parties had earlier compromised their dispute, with the claimant undertaking not to lodge any further claim unless he did so within a certain time. They now sought to commence action.
Held: When considering whether to discharge such an . .
CitedJones, Re (Alleged Contempt of Court) FD 21-Aug-2013
The Solicitor General sought the committal of the respondent for alleged contempt of court. There had been repeated litigation between the respondent and her former husband as to whether the children should live in Spain with the father or in Wales . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 09 April 2022; Ref: scu.83722

Director General of Fair Trading v Pioneer Concrete (UK) Ltd, sub nom Supply of Ready Mixed Concrete (No 2): HL 25 Nov 1994

The actions of company employees, acting in the course of their employment and in contempt may put the company employer in contempt also, and even though the company may have given explicit instructions that no infringing agreement should be entered into.

Citations:

Independent 30-Nov-1994, Times 25-Nov-1994, Gazette 05-Jan-1995, [1995] 1 AC 456

Citing:

Appeal fromIn Re Supply of Ready Mixed Concrete (No 2) CA 8-Jul-1993
An employer was not liable for its employee’s action in contempt of court against the company’s clear instructions with regard to anti-competitive agreements. . .
See AlsoDirector General of Fair Trading v Smiths Concrete: re Supply of Ready Mixed Concrete 1992
For a person to be found in contempt of a court order it is necessary to show that that he knew of the relevant order and with that knowledge he intended to do the act which amounted to a breach of the court order. It is not necessary to show that . .

Cited by:

CitedBird v Hadkinson ChD 4-Mar-1999
A party ordered to make disclosure in Mareva proceedings, could be found in contempt where the answers given were technically true, but misleading because of their incompleteness. The party has a clear duty to provide full and accurate disclosure. A . .
CitedGulf Azov Shipping Company Ltd v Idisi ComC 22-Nov-2000
Application to commit defendant to prison for contempt of court. . .
CitedFerguson v British Gas Trading Ltd CA 10-Feb-2009
Harassment to Criminal Level needed to Convict
The claimant had been a customer of the defendant, but had moved to another supplier. She was then subjected to a constant stream of threatening letters which she could not stop despite re-assurances and complaints. The defendant now appealed . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court, Company, Vicarious Liability

Updated: 08 April 2022; Ref: scu.82207

In Re Swaptronics Ltd: ChD 24 Jul 1998

A party who was in contempt of court should not be debarred from continuing to take a proper part in a court action unless that contempt was serious enough seriously to interfere with the fair conduct of the trial. ‘The courts need powers of punishment with which to enforce their orders. The ones they have at present are adequate. They ‘do not need a power which deprives the litigant of his right to litigate. Indeed it seems to me that were the courts to refuse to allow those in contempt access to the courts simply on the grounds that they are in contempt, they could well be acting in breach of the provisions of Article 6.1 of the European Convention on Human Rights which entitles everyone to the determination of his civil rights by means of a fair and public hearing before an independent and impartial tribunal. The ‘everyone’ in that Article is not subject to an exception in respect of people who are guilty of serious offences or contempt of court.’ and ‘Sir Robert Megarry’s Miscellany-at-Law records that in 1631 a litigant who threw a brickbat at a judge, but missed, had his right hand chopped off and nailed to the gibbet on which he was thereafter hanged in the presence of the court. I am not sure what would have happened to him had his aim been better.’

Judges:

Laddie J

Citations:

Times 17-Aug-1998, Gazette 23-Sep-1998, [1998] All ER (D) 407

Statutes:

European Convention on Human Rights 6.1

Citing:

CitedHadkinson v Hadkinson CA 1952
The courts adopt an approach similar to that of the United States courts where there has been a significant contempt on the part of a party to litigation. Denning LJ said: ‘Those cases seem to me to point the way to the modern rule. It is a strong . .

Cited by:

CitedMotorola Credit Corporation v Uzan and others (No 2) CA 12-Jun-2003
World-wide freezing orders had been made under the 1982 Act. The defendants were members of a Turkish family with substantial business interests in the telecommunications industry. In breach of orders made in the US some defendants had sought to . .
CitedPolanski v Conde Nast Publications Limited CA 11-Nov-2003
The claimant sought damages for defamation. He feared arrest and extradition to the US if he came to England, and was granted an order allowing him to give evidence by video link. The defendant appealed that order.
Held: There was no absolute . .
CitedArrow Nominees Inc, Blackledge v Blackledge ChD 2-Nov-1999
The applicants sought to strike out a claim under section 459. The two companies sold toiletries, the one as retail agent for the other. They disputed the relationship of the companies, and the use of a trading name. Documents were disclosed which . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court, Human Rights

Updated: 08 April 2022; Ref: scu.82214

In Re B (A Minor) (Contempt Evidence); Re B (Contempt of Court: affidavit: evidence): FD 15 Nov 1995

Respondents in contempt proceedings to file affidavit evidence to prepare case.

Citations:

Times 15-Nov-1995, [1996] 1 WLR 626

Cited by:

CitedIn re S-C (Children) v H-C CA 28-Jan-2010
The appellant appealed against an order finding her in contempt of court for breach of a court order. The finding had been made in the absence of the parties. She had reported to the police a distorted version of a medical report in the children . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 08 April 2022; Ref: scu.81717

HM Attorney General v Associated Newspapers Ltd and Others: QBD 9 Dec 1992

A newspaper was held to have been in contempt of court for publishing details of the deliberations of a jury, even though it had not solicited the information. Beldam LJ said of the word ‘disclosure’: ‘It is a word wide enough to encompass the revealing of the secrets of the jury room by a juryman to his friend or neighbour as well as the opening up of such knowledge to the public as a whole by someone to whom it has been revealed. And in the light of the background to which we have referred, we see every reason why Parliament should have intended the word ‘disclose’ to cover both situations. Nor do we regard it as significant that the secrets came into the hands of the newspaper indirectly. The existence of a market for the transcript of interviews with jurors containing prohibited details of their deliberations is as inimical to the interests of justice as the direct solicitation for money which occurred in this case. Section 8 is aimed at keeping the secrets of the jury room inviolate in the interests of justice. We believe that it would only be by giving it an interpretation which would emasculate Parliament’s purpose that it could be held that the widespread disclosure in this case did not infringe the section.’
Beldam LJ pointed out that if disclosures were allowed, jurors may come under pressure to make disclosures: ‘It was against this background that Parliament enacted section 8 of the Act of 1981. If breaches of the secrecy of the jury room had escalated to a degree that Parliament deemed a statutory sanction to be necessary, then its duty was to define clearly the circumstances in which an offence would be committed so that criminal sanctions were restricted to those offences which, in Lord Diplock’s words in Attorney-General v Leveller Magazine Ltd [1994] AC 440, 449: ‘involve an interference with the due administration of justice either in a particular case or more generally as a continuing process.” and ‘Thus, we believe, the law has long recognised the importance of complete freedom of discussion in the jury room. If a juror were to be deterred from expressing his doubt of the accused’s guilt because he feared subsequent recrimination or ridicule, the accused might be deprived of a persuasive voice in his favour. So, too, a jury deciding a plaintiff’s claim to damages for libel ought not to be exposed to interrogation by the erstwhile defendants or others who share an interest in avoiding liability for, or reducing the consequences of, defamatory publication. We consider that the free, uninhibited and unfettered discussion by the jury in the course of their deliberations is essential to the proper administration of a system of justice which includes trial by jury. The enacted provisions designed to maintain such discussion are confined to soliciting, disclosing or publishing the particular aspects of the discussion in the jury room identified in the section. To that extent only do they restrain freedom expression. There is no restriction, as Mr Pannick [counsel for the newspaper] suggested, on the freedom to express opinions, advance arguments, advocate changes or promote reform on the many aspects of jury trial which have already been the subject of public debate and which are, and remain, proper objects of public concern and interest. In due course the European Court of Human Rights may be called upon to decide whether the measures enacted by Parliament are disproportionate to the restriction imposed on freedom of expression. When it does so, it will surely take full account of Parliament’s experience of trial by jury as an instrument of justice in the United Kingdom and its appreciation of the need today to protect the secrecy of the jury room. We were invited to take these factors into account to guide our interpretation of section 8. To the extent that it is permissible for this purpose, we have considered them.’

Judges:

Beldam LJ

Citations:

Gazette 09-Dec-1992

Statutes:

European Convention on Human Rights, Contempt of Court Act 1981 8(1)

Citing:

Appealed toHM Attorney-General v Associated Newspapers Ltd and Others HL 4-Feb-1994
Following the acquittal of a prominent politician on a charge of conspiracy to murder, the New Statesman magazine published an article, based on an interview with one of the jurors, which gave an account of significant parts of the jury’s . .
CitedAttorney-General v Leveller Magazine Ltd HL 1-Feb-1979
The appellants were magazines and journalists who published, after committal proceedings, the name of a witness, a member of the security services, who had been referred to as Colonel B during the hearing. An order had been made for his name not to . .

Cited by:

Appeal fromHM Attorney-General v Associated Newspapers Ltd and Others HL 4-Feb-1994
Following the acquittal of a prominent politician on a charge of conspiracy to murder, the New Statesman magazine published an article, based on an interview with one of the jurors, which gave an account of significant parts of the jury’s . .
CitedHM Attorney General v Seckerson and Times Newspapers Ltd Admn 13-May-2009
The first defendant had been foreman of a jury in a criminal trial. He was accused of disclosing details of the jury’s votes and their considerations with concerns about the expert witnesses to the second defendant. The parties disputed the extent . .
At First InstanceAssociated Newspapers Ltd v United Kingdom ECHR 30-Nov-1994
The newspaper said that a finding against it of contempt of court for publishing material derived from a jury’s deliberations infringed its rights of free speech.
Held: The complaint was declared inadmissible. ‘The Commission agrees with the . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Human Rights, Media, Contempt of Court

Updated: 08 April 2022; Ref: scu.81405

Guildford Borough Council v Valler, Smith and Others: CA 15 Oct 1993

The use of the power of the High Court to commit a contemnor was discretionary but may be exercised for a negligent failure.

Judges:

Staughton LJ

Citations:

Ind Summary 01-Nov-1993, Times 15-Oct-1993, [1994] JPL 734

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Citing:

Appeal fromGuildford Borough Council v Valler and Others QBD 18-May-1993
Imprisonment or sequestration of assets was a proper remedy for a deliberate contempt of court. . .

Cited by:

Appealed toGuildford Borough Council v Valler and Others QBD 18-May-1993
Imprisonment or sequestration of assets was a proper remedy for a deliberate contempt of court. . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court, Contract

Updated: 08 April 2022; Ref: scu.81081

Guildford Borough Council v Valler and Others: QBD 18 May 1993

Imprisonment or sequestration of assets was a proper remedy for a deliberate contempt of court.

Citations:

Times 18-May-1993

Citing:

Appealed toGuildford Borough Council v Valler, Smith and Others CA 15-Oct-1993
The use of the power of the High Court to commit a contemnor was discretionary but may be exercised for a negligent failure. . .

Cited by:

Appeal fromGuildford Borough Council v Valler, Smith and Others CA 15-Oct-1993
The use of the power of the High Court to commit a contemnor was discretionary but may be exercised for a negligent failure. . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 08 April 2022; Ref: scu.81082

Irtelli v Squatriti and Others: CA 15 Apr 1992

Fresh evidence may be accepted in appeals against committal for contempt.

Citations:

Gazette 15-Apr-1992, [1993] QB 83

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedSecretary of State for Trade and Industry v Paulin ChD 13-May-2005
The director sought to appeal an order disqualifying him form acting as a company director.
Held: The disqualification proceedings were properly charactised as insolvency proceedings and therefore there was no requirement for permission to . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contempt of Court

Updated: 08 April 2022; Ref: scu.82427

Shand, (A Child), Re London Borough of Barking and Dagenham v Richards: FD 8 Nov 2017

Application for committal of child’s grandmother for failure to deliver child in accordance with collection order.
Held: The application was deficient procedurally and failed.

Judges:

Hayden J

Citations:

[2017] EWHC 2863 (Fam)

Links:

Bailii

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Children, Contempt of Court

Updated: 05 April 2022; Ref: scu.598971

Simmonds v Pearce: QBD 1 Dec 2017

Application to commit the Respondent to prison for breaches of various provisions of the Insolvency Act which are said to constitute deliberate, repeated, and serious contempt of court.

Judges:

Gloster LJ, Andrews J

Citations:

[2017] EWHC 35 (QB), [2017] WLR(D) 803

Links:

Bailii, WLRD

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Contempt of Court, Insolvency

Updated: 02 April 2022; Ref: scu.601122

Grosvenor Chemicals Ltd and Others v Upl Europe Ltd and Others: ChD 26 Jul 2017

Application under CPR r81.14(1) for permission to bring proceedings for committal for interference with the administration of justice. That is covered by Section III of CPR Part 81 (r81.12 to r81.14). The interference relied on is the use of documents disclosed in an action for a collateral purpose, contrary to CPR r31.22

Judges:

Birss J

Citations:

[2017] EWHC 1893 (Ch)

Links:

Bailii

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Contempt of Court, Civil Procedure Rules

Updated: 28 March 2022; Ref: scu.591242

HM Solicitor General v Stoddart: QBD 4 May 2017

Prosecution of a defendant juror who had undertaken internet research about the case he was hearing. He had discovered the prior criminal record of the defendant.
Held: Sentence of four months imprisonment suspended for two years.

Judges:

Sir Brian Leveson P QBD, Lewis J

Citations:

[2017] EWHC 1361 (QB)

Links:

Bailii

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Contempt of Court

Updated: 27 March 2022; Ref: scu.588183

Accident Exchange Ltd v Broom and Others: Admn 24 May 2017

The claimant sought the committal of the several defendants for contempt of court, alleging that they had over a period of time given false expert evidence to courts in an attempt to reduce the level of damages awarded for the hire of replacement vehicles after motor accidents.
Held: The allegations were proved.

Judges:

Supperstone J

Citations:

[2017] EWHC 1096 (Admin)

Links:

Bailii

Jurisdiction:

England and Wales

Contempt of Court

Updated: 26 March 2022; Ref: scu.584232