Judical Review
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'Privacy is also essential to democratic government because it fosters and encourages the moral autonomy of the citizen, a central requirement of a democracy.' Ruth Gavison

This website describes a judicial review (under English law) of 'routine' photographic surveillance, by police, of a person going about their lawful business and engaged in political activity. The claim (no.8624/2005) was lodged in October 2005 by the claimant, Andrew Wood. The defendant was the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, responsibile for policing London (Wood vs MPC for the policing of the metropolis). The claimant believed the police action was unlawful and breached their rights under the European Convention on Human Rights.

The Court of Appeal ruling (PDF), which was handed down on 21 May 2009, found for the Claimant/Appellant (Appeal Court ref: 2008/1466): the police action was unlawful. This decision reversed the previous ruling at the High Court, London in May 2008. The appeal court ordered photographs of the claimant be destroyed.The Government announced, on 2 June 2009, that all police photographic records will be reviewed to comply with the ruling.

Read a short article by the claimant - published after the Court of Appeal decision, or see the about section of this website for particulars and legal documents. Other details in the diary section of the website.

The legal challenge was supported by the human-rights group Liberty, Campaign Against Arms Trade, and the Press & Public Relations Branch of the National Union of Journalists.

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