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England and Wales High Court (Queen's Bench Division) Decisions
You are here: BAILII >> Databases >> England and Wales High Court (Queen's Bench Division) Decisions >> D v The Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis  EWHC 309 (QB) (22 February 2012)
Cite as:  EWHC 309 (QB)
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QUEEN'S BENCH DIVISION
Strand, London, WC2A 2LL
B e f o r e :
|- and -
|THE COMMISSIONER OF POLICE OF THE METROPOLIS
Dijen Basu (instructed by Metropolitan Police Legal Services) for the Respondent
Hearing date: 9 February 2012
Crown Copyright ©
Mr Justice Eady :
"30 … I am not surprised that she had a stressful time with her mother at home. I rather suspect that her mother was trying to put her back on the rails and she was not terribly keen to go back on the rails.
31. The question is this: is the description of her condition from that little vignette or history, sufficient to explain the delay from March 2009 to February 2010 and the inability of the Claimant to put in an application to the Legal Services Commission before October 2009 and the delay at waiting for the Legal Services Commission to consider that application and pledge its support? That is the critical point that I have to decide and I do not find it at all easy. On the one hand one can only have sympathy for this young woman, who, at the start of her life, has had such a rotten time. On the other hand, I cannot allow my judicial discretion to be influenced by mere sympathy. Is the explanation offered rational and reasonable?
32. What tips this case the wrong way from the Claimant's point of view is the fact that the claim form was not issued until February 2010. It could easily have been issued in October 2009 or even earlier than that, but after March. It should have been. It did not have to be served for four months. I am afraid it just comes down to that. It was started too late. Against a background of one year's limitation period, a party has waited four years (in other words, three years over time) until the facts become sufficiently clear to warrant starting proceedings that party must act very speedily. To wait further is courting disaster. That is what has happened here. In those circumstances and for that sole reason I decline to exercise my discretion in favour of the Claimant, who, but this will be no comfort to her at all, has my sympathy. The case must be struck out."