Ministry of Justice

The old category structure shown on this page is comprehensive as it contains every case. The new database structure introduced in 2019 contains fewer cases but is easier to search: see Special:Drilldown/Cases.
The pages below are initially ordered according to the dates on which they were added to the site (most recent first). The order can be changed by clicking on the symbol beside a column heading: click on the symbol beside "Page and summary" for alphabetical order; click beside "Categories" for the order in which the cases were reported. Click on the arrow symbol again to reverse the order. Click on a page name to view the relevant page. Asterisks mark those cases which have been added to the new database structure.

Case and summary Date added Categories
R (Lee-Hirons) v SSJ [2016] UKSC 46, [2016] MHLO 38 — "A man is convicted of an offence. Satisfied that he is suffering from mental disorder, the court makes an order for his detention in hospital. Satisfied that it is necessary for the protection of the public, the court also makes a restriction order, which removes from the hospital the power to discharge him. In due course a tribunal directs his discharge from hospital on conditions. Afterwards, however, the Secretary of State for Justice (“the Minister”) exercises his power to recall the man to hospital, where he is subject to renewed detention. This appeal is about the explanation for the recall which the law requires the Minister to provide to the man both at the time of his recall and soon afterwards." 2016‑10‑07 21:15:28 2016 cases, ICLR summary, Judgment available on Bailii, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (Lee-Hirons) v SSJ [2014] EWCA Civ 553, [2014] MHLO 23(1) A restricted patient who had been recalled argued that the Secretary of State was under a duty to provide written (not merely oral) reasons for recall, that the oral reasons given were inadequate and were not the Secretary of State’s true reasons, and that therefore the recall and consequent detention was unlawful. (2) The Court of Appeal held that: (a) Article 5(1) does not require the reasons for detention to be given immediately upon detention; (b) a fortiori, it does not require reasons to be given in writing; (c) Article 5(2) requires those reasons to be adequately and promptly given to him following detention; (d) on the facts, there had been a breach of the Secretary of State’s policy to provide reasons "as soon as possible and in any event within 72 hours" (HSG(93)20) and a breach of Article 5(2); (e) these breaches did not render unlawful what was originally a lawful recall. (3) The Court noted, in relation to the practice of the Secretary of State in relation to recall, that "It is now his practice to include in the warrant a brief reason for recall, and a reminder is given to the person executing the warrant to explain the reason at the time of execution." 2014‑05‑02 01:34:09 2014 cases, ICLR summary, Judgment available on Bailii, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (Lee-Hirons) v SSJ [2013] EWHC 1784 (Admin), [2013] MHLO 54 — "For the detailed reasons set out above I am satisfied that the decision to recall the Claimant was lawful because there had been a deterioration in his mental health since the hearing before the Tribunal. I find that there is a duty to give the patient who is being recalled oral reasons for that decision. I am satisfied that the Claimant was told of the reasons for his recall. I therefore dismiss the claim for damages for false imprisonment and breaches of article 5 of the ECHR, and I dismiss the claim for a declaration." [Summary required.] 2013‑07‑20 22:55:33 2013 cases, Judgment available on Bailii, MHLR summary, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (RW) v SSJ [2012] EWHC 2082 (Admin), [2012] MHLO 87The responsible clinician and tribunal were of the view in March 2011 that the patient required continued treatment in detention in hospital, and the tribunal recommended transfer from Broadmoor to a medium secure unit; in June the RC sought permission for trial leave to a MSU, with return to prison being the planned consequence if it were unsuccessful; trial leave in September was unsuccessful and, that month, the Secretary of State remitted the patient to prison on the RC's advice. (1) There had been new information since the tribunal which put a different complexion on the case, namely the unsuccessful trial leave, so the Secretary of State was entitled to take at face value the RC's new opinion that the patient did not require treatment in hospital for mental disorder. (2) It was not necessary for the Secretary of State to consider that lack of treatment in prison might breach Article 3 or require almost immediate re-transfer to hospital; the correct approach was to consider the remission request when made, and consider transfer to hospital later if necessary. (3) Permission to amend the grounds to challenge the alleged ongoing failure to transfer under s47 was refused, but the judge directed that if a fresh application were made within six weeks that the permission application be referred to him. 2012‑09‑01 00:21:12 2012 cases, Brief summary, Judgment available on MHLO, Judgment missing from Bailii, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (Davison) v SSJ (2010) All ER (D) 258 (Jul)The first order was a s37/41 restricted hospital order. The second order was an unrestricted s37 hospital order, but an administrative error by the court clerk led to the belief that it was also a s37/41 order. The Tribunal conditionally discharged the patient; the SSJ absolutely discharged the first order as being unnecessary, but subsequently discovered the administrative error. The SSJ judicially reviewed himself. The administrative error constituted a mistake of fact that amounted to an error of law: the absolute discharge decision was unlawful and was quashed, making the patient again subject to the conditional discharge regime. 2010‑07‑27 23:22:09 2010 cases, Brief summary, Ministry of Justice, No transcript

R (Munday) v SSJ [2009] EWHC 3638 (Admin)The MoJ's decision to recall the claimant, although contrary to the RMO's advice, was not Wednesbury unreasonable or otherwise flawed on conventional public law grounds: the disagreement was not on medical grounds but on whether, given the history of arson and recent disengagement, a mere allegation of and arrest for arson was sufficient justification for recall. 2010‑02‑07 16:31:33 2009 cases, Brief summary, Judgment missing from Bailii, Ministry of Justice, No transcript

R (M) v Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust [2002] EWHC 1400 (Admin) — Unsuccessful challenge to s47/49 patient's return to prison. [Summary required.] 2009‑10‑31 18:33:25 2002 cases, Ministry of Justice, No summary, Transcript

R (X) v SSJ [2009] EWHC 2465 (Admin)The Secretary of State had rejected an application for escorted community leave because of the nature of the index offence and the perspective of the victim's family. (1) The decision was quashed because neither the question of risk to others nor the positive benefits to the patient had been considered (irrationality, failure to take into account relevant considerations and considering irrelevant ones). (2) The reasons presented in the summary grounds of defence were patently not the reasons for the decision. 2009‑10‑12 19:37:43 2009 cases, Brief summary, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (PP) v SSJ [2009] EWHC 2464 (Admin)The Secretary of State's decision to reject an application for a restricted patient to be granted trial leave to a medium secure unit was lawful; he was not bound to seek alternative evidence even where the evidence before him was unanimously in favour or leave being granted. 2009‑10‑12 19:37:36 2009 cases, Brief summary, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (P) v Mersey Care NHS Trust [2003] EWHC 994 (Admin)A Tribunal recommendation for transfer from high to medium security is an important input but is not determinative; the decision whether to use the s17 (leave) and s19 (transfer) powers is for the RC and hospital managers, subject to the consent of the Secretary of State; on the facts, the Article 8 interference was justified and a decision not to transfer was properly open to them. 2009‑05‑11 22:35:33 2003 cases, Brief summary, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (Gilkes) v SSHD [1999] EWHC Admin 47One of the two medical reports was too out-of-date to be reasonably relied upon for a s47 transfer to hospital; a transfer at the end of a prison sentence was not inherently unlawful; based on subsequent material from the same doctor, no relief would be granted as if the Secretary of State had insisted on an up-to-date report he would have made a transfer direction anyway. 2009‑04‑11 20:19:20 1999 cases, Brief summary, MHLR summary, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

Kay v UK 17821/91 [1994] ECHR 51(1) The recall to hospital without up-to-date objective medical expertise showing that the applicant suffered from a true mental disorder, or that his previous psychopathic disorder persisted - in the absence of any emergency - violated Article 5(1); (2) The subsequent MHRT proceedings were inherently too slow, which breached Article 5(4): the first hearing date offered was five months after referral, and final determination took just over two years. 2009‑04‑11 17:09:30 1994 cases, Brief summary, ECHR, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

Morley v UK 16084/03 [2002] ECHR 853The applicant had been transferred from hospital back to prison. He argued that his Article 5(4) right to review of his detention had been breached as the transfer had been ordered by the executive rather than a court, and asserted that he was still of unsound mind within Article 5(1)(e). This complaint was rejected (judicial review is sufficient) and his Article 8 complaint also failed. 2009‑04‑10 14:36:29 2002 cases, Brief summary, ECHR, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (Donaldson) v SSHD [2006] EWHC 1107 (Admin)The Home Office decision to cease considering patients for technical lifer status (unless in exceptional circumstances) was lawful: (1) It was too early to say whether the Home Office's acceptance that there could be "exceptional cases" was meaningless and that the policy was therefore an unlawful fetter on the discretion as to route to discharge; (2) There was no substantive legitimate expectation that the policy would not be changed, that it would be kept open for them, or a legitimate expectation that more would be done in relation to the notification about the change in policy 2009‑04‑09 23:04:33 2006 cases, Brief summary, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (IT) v SSJ (2008) EWHC 1707Recall of patient unlawful where no new relevant information available to MoJ after discharge by MHRT; the element of the discharge plan requiring leave to be escorted was a temporary measure and so did not amount to continuing deprivation of liberty. 2008‑11‑03 16:41:04 2008 cases, Detailed summary, Discharge conditions, Ministry of Justice, Transcript, Unlawful detention cases

R (Rayner) v Secretary of State for Justice [2008] EWCA Civ 176The statutory scheme dealing with the referral of the case of a recalled mental patient to a mental health review tribunal was not incompatible with the patient’s rights under the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, whether because of the timescale envisaged or for lack of a right of direct access to a court. 2008‑09‑13 07:51:48 2008 cases, Detailed summary, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (IR) v Dr Shetty [2003] EWHC 3152 (Admin) — Technical lifer status. 2008‑09‑12 16:50:56 2003 cases, Ministry of Justice, No summary, Transcript

R (RA) v SSHD [2002] EWHC 1618 (Admin) — Power to grant/refuse permission for leave after deferred conditional discharge. 2008‑09‑12 16:47:17 2002 cases, Ministry of Justice, No summary, Transcript

R (X) v SSHD [2000] EWCA Civ 311Home Office can repatriate using either Immigration Act 1971 or Mental Health Act 1983. 2008‑09‑12 16:45:12 2000 cases, Brief summary, Ministry of Justice, Repatriation cases, Transcript

R (MM) v SSHD [2007] EWCA Civ 687Home Secretary has to believe on reasonable grounds that something has happened, or information has emerged, of sufficient significance to justify recalling the patient, and must have up-to-date medical evidence, but there is no general test laid down by the court. (Appeal dismissed.) 2007‑07‑12 20:21:20 2007 cases, Brief summary, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (Rayner and Marsh) v SSHD [2007] EWHC 1028 (Admin)(1) Section 75 provides an independent legal device by which the detainee may appear before a judge which is not dependent on the good will of the detaining authority and thus is Article 5 compliant; in any event, the section cannot be incompatible as means exist to operate it compatibly. (2) In order for s75 to be compatible the Secretary of State ought to refer the case of a recalled patient at once (in practice, within 72 hours) to the MHRT unless the circumstances of the applicant or his case positively require otherwise. (3) On the facts the delay in making the reference breached Article 5(4). 2007‑05‑20 10:43:59 2007 cases, Detailed summary, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R v SSHD, ex p Harry [1998] EWHC Admin 420Home Secretary not obliged to follow MHRT recommendations as to transfer of restricted patient to lower security; can look further afield for information and advice; but had to act in a procedurally fair manner, which he had not done 2007‑02‑06 18:39:07 1998 cases, Brief summary, Judgment available on MHLO, Judgment missing from Bailii, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (C) v SSHD [2002] EWCA Civ 647HO could not exercise discretion to refer case under s71 after MHRT without good reason; evidence lacking at MHRT hearing was not good reason on the facts; following IH (CA) MHRT remains fully seised of case after a D/C/D; decision to refer quashed. (rough summary) 2007‑02‑06 18:38:35 2002 cases, Brief summary, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (Stewart) v Managers of the NW London MH NHS Trust [1997] EWCA Civ 2201Part II (civil) and Part III (criminal) powers can co-exist and operate independently of each other. "If he were discharged by the tribunal it would be a discharge in relation to his liability to detention under Section 3 which would in no way affect the Secretary of State’s powers to recall him as a restricted patient" 2007‑02‑06 18:37:46 1997 cases, Brief summary, Judgment available on MHLO, Judgment missing from Bailii, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (MM) v SSHD [2006] EWHC 3056 (Admin)"If, on the basis of medical evidence and other information which the Secretary of State has, he reasonably reaches the opinion that deterioration in the mental condition of the patient is likely to occur in the near future unless he is recalled to hospital, and that such deterioration would put the health and safety of the patient or others at risk, he is entitled to order recall." 2007‑02‑06 18:37:07 2006 cases, Brief summary, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

Benjamin and Wilson v UK 28212/95 [2002] ECHR 636Technical lifer status violated Article 5(4).

See "Technical lifer" page for background.

2006‑08‑15 22:14:11 2002 cases, Brief summary, ECHR, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (OS) v SSHD [2006] EWHC 1903 (Admin)Home Office decision not to approve unescorted community leave following MHRT deferred conditional discharge was not unlawful; HO entitled to rely upon separate factors than those considered by MHRT, including absconsion risk flowing from immigration status. 2006‑07‑30 11:40:20 2006 cases, Detailed summary, Ministry of Justice, Transcript

R (K) v West London MH NHS Trust [2005] EWHC 1454 (Admin) — Leave/funding. 2006‑04‑13 21:30:44 2005 cases, Ministry of Justice, No summary, Transcript

R (K) v West London MH NHS Trust [2006] EWCA Civ 118MENTAL DISORDER — Secretary of State’s powers — Leave of absence — Patient granted leave of absence by registered medical officer — Patient wishing to make trial transfer to private sector medium security hospital — Secretary of State refusing to fund transfer — Whether Secretary of State (or his delegate) obliged to fund placement — Whether opinion of registered medical officer binding on Secretary of State — National Health Service Act 1977, s 3 — Mental Health Act 1983, s17. A mental health trust was not obliged to fund a placement for trial leave which a patient’s registered medical officer had decided under s 17 of the Mental Health Act 1983 was clinically appropriate. The opinion of a registered medical officer on a matter of clinical judgment was not binding on the Secretary of State for Health (or his delegate) performing functions under s 3 of the National Health Service Act 1977. 2006‑04‑12 20:32:19 2006 cases, Detailed summary, Ministry of Justice, Transcript