Public Law

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Public law is at the forefront of all our work and one of the main tools that can be used to make the state and its tribunals more accountable and accessible.

We pursue public law challenges in all areas ranging through inquests, police complaints, immigration detention powers, prisoners’ rights, data retention and criminal appeals.

All of our lawyers have experience in pursuing public law challenges as this remedy is integral to all aspects of our work and the service we provide.

 

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This can ensure that new laws are interpreted and implemented so that they operate in accordance with fundamental human rights. We have challenged numerous laws including those relating to:

The police retention of DNA and fingerprint samples from innocent citizens;

The manner in which sentences are fixed for people convicted of murder; and

The test to be applied when released prisoners are recalled to prison.

This can ensure that new laws are interpreted and implemented so that they operate in accordance with fundamental human rights. We have challenged numerous laws including those relating to:

  • The police retention of DNA and fingerprint samples from innocent citizens;
  • The manner in which sentences are fixed for people convicted of murder; and
  • The test to be applied when released prisoners are recalled to prison.

People should be given full and proper reasons for decisions that affect their rights. We have succeeded in achieving a right to properly reasoned decisions on behalf of:

  • Prisoners in respect of decisions affecting their release;
  • Prisoners in respect of their categorisation; and
  • Bereaved families in respect of decisions not to prosecute police officers concerned in their loved one’s deaths.

We have challenged Coroners:

  • In respect of their conduct of inquests; and
  • Concerning their discretion to convene inquests in certain cases.

The investigation of police complaints raises many concerns and we have challenged:

  • The adequacy of investigations undertaken;
  • The quality of decisions reached by the Independent Police Complaints Commission;
  • Decisions to exclude victims from the process of investigation; and
  • The legality of permitting police officers to retire and thereby escape disciplinary sanction.

Where victims of crime have concerns about how their cases have been handled by the police and the prosecuting authorities, we have represented people in challenges to:

  • The legality of decisions not to prosecute police officers;
  • The lack of openness and transparency in the process; and
  • The prosecution of asylum seekers.

The police make many decisions that impact on people’s rights and we have acted in cases challenging:

  • The administration of cautions and reprimands and how the police use this information;
  • Police decisions not to investigate serious offences;
  • The retention and use of police intelligence; and
  • The retention of DNA and fingerprint samples.

We have represented NGOs and individuals in cases seeking to ensure control over the state’s use of personal data before the Investigatory Powers Tribunal, the domestic courts and the European Court of Human Rights.

Learn more about our notable Public Law cases

“They are very professional, meticulous and friendly at the same time.”
Chambers and Partners 2023
“The team are very good at engaging with the complexity and details of our legal issues, and are very skilled at applying this to the broader policy context.”
Chambers and Partners 2023

Latest news

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    Supreme Court dismiss government appeal in torture complicity case

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