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England and Wales Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) Decisions
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Cite as:  EWCA Crim 205,  4 WLR 2
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PROSECUTION APPLICATION FOR LEAVE TO APPEAL AGAINST
A TERMINATING RULING UNDER S.58 OF THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE ACT 2003
London, WC2A 2LL
B e f o r e :
(VICE PRESIDENT OF THE CACD)
LORD JUSTICE LINDBLOM
MRS JUSTICE CARR DBE
|Wokingham Borough Council|
|Keith Scott and others|
Epiq Europe Ltd 165 Fleet Street, London EC4A 2DY
Tel No: 020 7404 1400 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
(Official Shorthand Writers to the Court)
Ms S Sheikh QC and Mr C Merritt appeared on behalf of Wokingham Borough Council
Mr S Stemp appeared on behalf of the Respondents
Crown Copyright ©
The ruling hearing
Grounds of Appeal
" ... it is not likely to constitute an abuse of process to proceed with a prosecution unless (i) there has been an unequivocal representation by those with the conduct of the investigation or prosecution of a case that the defendant will not be prosecuted and (ii) that the defendant has acted on that representation to his detriment. Even then, if facts come to light which were not known when the representation was made, these may justify proceeding with the prosecution despite the representation."
52. Ground 2
57. Ground 4
"There is no statutory rule which provides that a judgment must be delivered within a specified time. It has to be delivered within a reasonable time and what is a reasonable time may well vary according to the complexity of the legal issues, the volume and nature of the evidence and other matters."
"The reason for this is clear: the courts are here concerned with considerations of fairness and they must be free to respond to the circumstances of each case."
Garnham J referred to this paragraph in his judgment in Ceredigion without any shadow of dissent. Any reliance on Garnham J's judgment in support of the proposition that a solemn promise not to prosecute is always required to support an abuse argument under this heading is misplaced. Garnham J had before him a Case Stated in which he was bound to answer the questions posed for him by the District Judge. The principal question posed was whether the District Judge was entitled to find that the council in that case had made an unequivocal undertaking that the defendants would not be prosecuted. It was that question that he answered adversely to the respondents. He did not purport to, and could not, restrict the ambit of the abuse jurisdiction in the way suggested.
Epiq Europe Ltd hereby certify that the above is an accurate and complete record of the proceedings or part thereof.
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