Case ongoing

Mark Scott’s Notable Cases

Public Inquiry into the Grenfell Tower Fire

Mark represents a number of individuals and families granted Core Participant status in the Public Inquiry into the Grenfell Tower fire.

R (on the application of AM (a child by his litigation friend OA and OA) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  [2017]

The Home Office’s application to stay Judicial Review proceedings on the cases of two clients affected by its policy on transfers of unaccompanied minors from France during the demolition of the Calais camp was refused by the court.

The government had requested that the cases of these and other children affected by the policy, whose requests to be admitted to the UK were rejected in the course of an ‘accelerated process’ in October 2016, be deferred until after a separate systemic challenge to the policy had been determined.

Inquest into the death of Josh Collinson [2016]

An inquest jury concluded that failures on the part of prison and healthcare staff at both HMPYOI Parc and HMPYOI Swinfen Hall contributed to the death of 18 year old Josh Collinson.

Calais Children [2016]

The Upper Tribunal, Immigration and Asylum Chamber ordered the Home Office to immediately allow three unaccompanied Syrian children and an adult to be reunited with their families in the UK

UN Intervention in Belhaj appeal [2015]

Mark acted for Interveners from the United Nations at the appeal heard before the Supreme Court on 9 – 12 November 2015. The case was concerned with whether a former opponent of Colonel Gaddafi could bring a claim against the British Government for alleged complicity in his rendition to and subsequent torture in Libya.

The Appellants, including the British Government, the Rt Hon. Jack Straw, the Home Office, the former head of MI6 Sir Mark Allen and others, argued that the foreign act of state doctrine applied and that the claim was barred by state immunity.

RA (A child) and BF -v- SSHD [2015]

The Upper Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) ruled that the Home Office breached its duty to take account of the best interests and welfare of a child under s 55 Borders Act 2009 by removing the child and his mother to Nigeria in January 2015.

In a subsequent judgment on relief the Tribunal ordered that the mother and child be returned to the UK by the Home Office. An appeal by the Home Office was rejected by the Court of Appeal on 22 April 2015.

Inquest into the death of Colin Holt [2015]

Colin Holt died after being restrained by police. The inquest jury found that serious failures by 3 officers caused Mr Holt’s death. Mr Holt, a psychiatric patient, died from positional asphyxia in 2010 after police restrained him a prone position over an armchair in his home. The jury found that officers maintained Mr Holt in this position for an unnecessary duration and this, together with failures to reposition and monitor him, caused his death.

Investigatory Powers Tribunal [2015]

The Investigatory Powers Tribunal ruled that the British intelligence services acted unlawfully in accessing millions of people’s personal communications collected by the USA’s National Security Agency. It was the first time in its fifteen year history that the Tribunal has ever ruled against the intelligence and security services and follows the government having to disclose its formerly secret policies in the face of the litigation.

Belhaj & Boudchar -v- The Rt. Hon Jack Straw, Sir Mark Allen (CMG) and others [2014]

The Court of Appeal decided that claims brought on behalf of victims of alleged extraordinary rendition can be heard in English courts. Mark acted on behalf of the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture, Mr Juan E. Méndez, and Chair-Rapporteur on Arbitrary Detention, Mr Mads Andenas who intervened. Arguments that the claims should not be heard because it might involve scrutiny of CIA activities were rejected.

Inquest into the death of Jimmy Mubenga [2013]

The coroner at the inquest into the death of Jimmy Mubenga published a comprehensive and highly critical report that made a series of recommendations to the Home Office and agencies involved.

Jimmy Mubenga, a healthy 46 year old Angolan man, died on 12 October 2010 following face-forward restraint in his seat by three G4S security guards on a British Airways flight from Heathrow airport to Angola. Following eight weeks of evidence, the jury at the inquest into his death ruled that he had been unlawfully killed.

Second inquest into the death of Adam Rickwood January [2011] 

Following the death of Adam in 2004, a flawed first inquest, two judicial reviews, a successful civil action and a decision of the Court of Appeal in C that Amendment Rules that allowed for restraint for Good Order and Discipline breached articles 3 and 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights, the second inquest into Adam’s death concluded in January 2011. Its findings were that Adam had been unlawfully restrained, the restraint had more than minimally contributed to his death and that there were serious failings leading to an unlawful regime at Hassockfield STC.

R (Children’s Rights Alliance for England (CRAE) v Secretary of State for Justice

After obtaining a Protective Costs Order for CRAE acted in judicial review proceedings against the Secretary of State for failing to notify children and former children in Secure Training Centres that they had been subjected to assaults and human rights breaches by staff whilst they were in custody.

HXA v The Home Office [2010]

The Court found that HXA had been unlawfully detained pending deportation for a period of 11 months. The Court found that immigration detention could only be used for the purpose of removing an individual from the UK, and not in order to investigate whether he could be transferred to detention in his country of origin.

MXL v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2010]

It was found that a foreign national prisoner mother separated from her children had been unlawfully detained, and in breach of articles 5 and 8 ECHR, due to the failure to have adequate regard to the best interests of her children.

R (Pounder No 2) v HM Coroner for North & South Districts of Durham & Darlington [2010]

Acted for Adam Rickwood’s mother in a second successful judicial review of the Coroner’s failure to recluse himself from the second inquest into Adam’s death. The Court held that the Coroner had appeared to predetermine central contested issues in the case and so the second inquest needed to be dealt with by a different Coroner.

K v Home Office & R(K) v SSHD

High Court proceedings where liability was admitted and substantial compensation was awarded for two periods of unlawful detention where an Iraqi asylum seeker was threatened with unlawful removals to the Kurdish controlled region in Iraq.

R (London Secure Services Ltd and others) v Youth Justice Board [2009]

Acted for a child detained in a Local Authority Secure Children’s Home [LASCH] who challenged the decision of the Youth Justice Board (“YJB”) not to award a criminal justice contract for provision of placements at the LASCH. The claim was with unsuccessful at first instance but the child has been granted permission to appeal to the Court of Appeal.

R (Pounder) v HM Coroner for North & South Districts of Durham & Darlington [2009]

Acted for Adam Rickwood’s mother in judicial review proceedings of the inquest into her son’s death in custody. The Court affirmed that the power to use force on children in STCs was restricted to the limited circumstances set out in the STC Rules not as contended at the inquest by Serco as generally when necessary to support staff orders. It was also held that Adam had been subjected to at least degrading treatment contrary to article 3 ECHR and a fresh inquest was necessary as the jury’s conclusions were infected by a failure of the Coroner to rule on the legality of the restraint.

R v (D & K) v SSHD & others [2006]

Acted for the Claimant D in a successful challenge to the systemic and long standing failure of the SSHD and to provide at Oakington medical assessments as required by the Detention Centre Rules which were designed to protect those who had been tortured from detention. The failure was declared unlawful and that the Claimants were entitled to damages for their detention.

Group Action – Opiate Dependant Prisoner Litigation [HC 2006]

Mark led a team of lawyers at Bhatt Murphy in a group action brought by approximately 200 prisoners for inappropriate healthcare in prisons for those with drug dependency issues. Prior to trial the home office admitted liability for negligence, assault and breaches of the Human Rights Act and damages of £750,000 were subsequently negotiated for the 200 prisoners.

ID and others v Home Office [CA 2005]

Which declared that an immigrant detained under immigration legislation had an entitlement to bring a private law action for false imprisonment on the basis that the detention was unreasonable and/or in breach of policy.

Re Sarah Campbell, Cheshire Coroner’s Court [2005]

Acted for Pauline Campbell the mother of Sarah who had died at HMP Styal, the jury in their verdict expressed concerns about the treatment of Sarah who was one of a number of women who had died at the prison.

N and others v Group 4 HC [2005]

Settlement, the terms of which are confidential, of claims by a number of detainees regarding their treatment and the conditions of their detention following the fire at Yarl’s Wood in 2002.

M v Home Office HC [2005]

Settlement of a damages action by a refugee involving a challenge to the Home Office policy of detention of Zimbabwean asylum seekers following the suspension of removals to Zimbabwe in January 2002.

LM v Home Office HC [2005]

Settlement of a damages action by a refugee whose detention was continued after a significant change in the strength of his asylum claim.


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