Gypsy and Traveller Law
Author: Edited by Chris Johnson and Marc Willers
ISBN: 978 1903307526
Publishers: Legal Action Group
Publication Date: September 2007
Publisher’s Title Information
Forward By Lord Avebury
'It was a real pleasure to be asked to contribute a foreword to this Handbook on Gypsy and Traveller law, and thus to have the chance to congratulate the authors on their comprehensive coverage of this increasingly important subject. This second edition will be an essential reference, not only for legal practitioners, but for local authority officials, citizens advice bureaux, Gypsy and Traveller activists, councillors and members of both Houses of Parliament.'
Gypsy and Traveller Law brings together the areas of law affecting the travelling community. It is the only guide to cover accommodation needs such as planning, site provision, homelessness and eviction as well as other issues impacting on the day to day lives of Gypsies and Travellers such as education, healthcare and race discrimination.
The Gypsy and Traveller communities in the UK experience widespread deprivation, social exclusion and discrimination. The lack of provision of suitable sites for Gypsies and Travellers is the root cause of most, if not all, of the difficulties that they face living in Great Britain today.
There is now a new legal framework and new policy designed to address the severe shortage of sites. Local authorities now have a duty to assess the need for Gypsy and Traveller sites in their area and to allocate land which will meet the need identified. However, it is likely that it will take a considerable length of time for that exercise to be completed and, meanwhile, rented site provision remains in short supply and Gypsies and Travellers continue to be frustrated in their attempts to develop sites for themselves.
Gypsy and Traveller Law balances straightforward, practical advice with comprehensive coverage of the statutes, regulations, guidance, circulars and a rapidly developing body of case-law.
This fully updated second edition includes:
A new section on non-local authority rented Gypsy and Traveller sites;
Significant human rights law developments, including analysis of the impact of the decisions in Connors v UK and Price v Leeds City Council;
The latest developments on the question of security of tenure on official local authority sites;
New government guidance on the grant of planning permission, the provision of sites and their management;
Up-to-date case-law on the enforcement of planning control;
The changes introduced by the Equalities Act 2006 and the creation of the CEHR.
This is the key reference work for lawyers and advisers working with Gypsies and Travellers and an essential guide for local authorities on their duties to the travelling community and the social and legal implications of failure to fulfil these obligations. Gypsy and Traveller Law also aims to empower Gypsies and Travellers to secure their rights and challenge injustice.
This book is intended as a comprehensive coverage of the law as it relates to Gypsies and Travellers. It only covers the law as it relates to England and Wales.
The law as it relates to Gypsies and Travellers in England and Wales is
correct as at 1 August 2007.
Chapter 1 covers
1.6 Who are the Gypsies and Travellers?
1.8 Historical context
1.17 Racialising Gypsy people
1.22 Irish Travellers
1.29 The end of the road for nomadism?
1.32 Defining Gypsies in law
1.34 Accommodation for Gypsies and Travellers
1.39 New Travellers
1.48 Outline of the book
Endorsement of the Book
'I take great pleasure in commending this book, which for the first time draws together all of the legislation and case-law relating to Gypsies and Travellers. I hope that this book will empower people to secure their rights and enable those representing them both to provide effective advice on existing laws and bring improvements to the laws themselves.' Trevor Phillips, chair of the Commission for Equality and Human Rights (CEHR), on the first edition.
Editors and contributors:
Chris Johnson is a solicitor and partner in Community Law Partnership in Birmingham, and leader of the Travellers Advice Team at the firm.
Marc Willers is a barrister at Garden Court Chambers in London, specialising in public law, human rights, and planning law, with a particular emphasis on the representation of Gypsies and Travellers.
Contributing authors: Sasha Barton, Sharon Baxter, Stephen Cottle, Murray Hunt, Tim Jones, Angus Murdoch and David Watkinson.
Review of 1st Edition
'Gypsy and Traveller Law' sets out to be a comprehensive discussion of the law as it relates to Gypsies and Travellers in England and Wales and it succeeds!
As a newly appointed Gypsy and Traveller Liaison Officer I found the law concerning these minority groups overwhelming, but with this book in my car at all times I was able to research and address almost all the questions I get on a daily basis.
The contents include:
Definitions of Gypsies and Travellers
Relevant legislation - including Planning Law
Full Government Guidance Documents, and
Homelessness applications to Local Authorities.
The book flows through an enriched discussion using case law and detailed analysis of the reasoning behind all decisions made in civil and criminal proceedings. The discussion is balanced and coherent, providing many examples of 'where the buck' must stop in certain circumstances and the reasons why so many authorities and individuals make every attempt to pass the buck on and on.
Gypsy and Traveller Law has provided my team and I with an invaluable tool of reference and a great source of explanations to Gypsies and Travellers themselves. It is becoming increasingly difficult for all of us to keep in touch with legislative change and political stand points on this topic that such a book can only be helpful in enlightening professionals on work that has gone before and targets for the future.
Gypsy and Traveller Liaison Officer
Abuse of Process
Author: Colin Wells
ISBN: 1 903307 46 5
Publishers: Legal Action Group
Publication Date: June 2006
Publisher's title Information
All criminal courts have a general and inherent power to stay proceedings in order to protect their processes from abuse and to secure fair treatment for defendants. Applications are made on a daily basis in the criminal courts and are frequently used as the basis of later appeals.
This is an ever-evolving area of law and Abuse of Process: a practical approach examines and explains the concept of abuse of process and how it operates within the criminal justice system.
It includes all the relevant UK and European case-law as well as a examination of other jurisdictions. It is the only handbook on abuse of process to deal with abuse of process at the police station, breach of PACE Codes and the role of the police station adviser.
Abuse of Process supplements comprehensive coverage of criminal procedure with invaluable tactical guidance, skeleton arguments and reference materials
Introduction to common law, EHCR and Human Rights Act
Abuse of process at the police station
Forums for raising abuse of process
Non-availability of evidence
Unfair conduct including misconduct, entrapment and double jeopardy
Inability to participate
* Home Office Circular `Cautioning of Adult Offenders'
* Code for Crown Prosecutors Attorney-General's Guidelines on Disclosure
* Extracts from CPIA 1996
Author: Ed Cape (editor)
ISBN: 1 903307 31 7
Publishers: Legal Action Group
Publication Date: April 2004
Publisher's Title Information
The Government talks tough on crime. It is, in the words of its white paper Justice for All, committed to 'rebalancing the system in favour of victims, witnesses and communities'. But should the relationship between victims and defendants be treated as a zero-sum game? And is policy being driven more by tabloid perceptions - of a criminal justice system in crisis - than by a genuine concern for victims' interests? Reconcilable rights explores the tensions between the interests of victims and those of defendants in the criminal justice process.
This book is based on a series of seminars and brings together leading academic experts, practitioners and policy-makers in a wide-ranging analysis and discussion on four separate, but interconnected themes.
Why does the present government believe that victims' and defendants' rights are mutually incompatible?
Have the 'pro victim' changes introduced in recent years created false expectations and eroded the defendant's right to fair trial?
Is there a justification for involving victims in sentencing through the use of Victim Impact Statements?
What rights should victims have within an adversarial system of criminal justice?
Reconcilable rights provides a thorough and thought-provoking analysis of this crucial area of policy - highlighting the growing polarisation of the rights and interests of victims and of those accused of crime in both government rhetoric and in popular discourse.
Beyond the Courtroom: A Lawyer's Guide to Campaigning
Edition: First (October 2005)
Author: Katie Ghose
ISBN: 1 903307 35 X
Publishers: Legal Action Group
Publication Date: 2005
Publisher’s Title Information
Beyond the Courtroom sets out how lawyers can go beyond individual cases to influence policy as well as law - and to work in partnership with others to effect change and challenge accepted thinking at local, national and EU level.
This is a unique publication specifically aimed at the 'campaigning lawyer' that provides answers to frequently asked questions, such as:
How can I attempt to change a Bill before it becomes an Act of Parliament?
How can my skills be put to best use in a campaigning organisation?
What steps do I need to take to raise awareness of an issue in the media?
How can I pursue an issue in Brussels as well as in Westminster and Whitehall?
Beyond the Courtroom is a unique new title aimed at lawyers, campaigners, charities, pressure groups and anyone involved in an effort to bring about change in the law. It brings the constitution to life with a clear explanation of the law-making process as well as practical tips and case studies.
This versatile handbook includes all aspects of campaigning and influencing from a lawyer's perspective, including how to make your mark in Whitehall, Westminster and Brussels. It also includes a comprehensive chapter detailing how to have your say in the media as well as:
Practical tips for influencing and campaigning
Case studies showing how lawyers have made a difference
Template draft parliamentary briefings, amendments to legislation and press releases
Clear signposts for sources of further information
Katie Ghose is the director of the British Institute for Human Rights. She is a barrister with extensive campaigns and political experience, having worked in public affairs, as an MP's researcher and as a parliamentary adviser. She is a trustee of Stonewall and Bail for Immigration Detainees and was a member of the taskforce which advised the government on the establishment of the Commission for Equality and Human Rights.
'It is both an innovative examination of our constitution and a manual of wise practice.' Rt Hon Lord Justice Sedley.
'A comprehensive, detailed and accurate road map for the new starter to campaigning and a handy reference book for all.' Vera Baird QC MP, from her foreword.
Police Misconduct - Legal Remedies
Authors: John Harrison, Stephen Cragg and Heather Williams
Publishers: Legal Action Group
Publication Date: April 2005
Publishers Press Release
Police Misconduct, now in its fourth edition, is a unique and practical guide for practitioners and advisers covering the two major routes to remedying police misconduct: police complaints and civil actions in the courts.
This book equips the reader with the essentials for advising on the full range of procedures, strategies and tactics available. It provides thorough procedural advice and step-by-step guidance from pre-issue considerations through to jury trial and appeal. There is detailed guidance on the most common torts - false imprisonment, malicious prosecution and misfeasance - and clear analysis of developing causes of actions against the police such as negligence, privacy, discrimination and claims under the Human Rights Act. It outlines other available remedies such as judicial review and inquests, and includes a unique guide to obtaining compensation for wrongful convictions from the Home Office.
Since the last edition of this book the legal background to the field of police misconduct has transformed. The fourth edition has been substantially rewritten and expanded to include a major analysis of developments such as the Independent Police Complaints Commission, new police discipline systems, constitutional changes to the organisation of the police and ever-widening police powers.
The constitutional and organisational position of the police
Police complaints Discipline and criminal prosecution
Intentional torts to the person
Abuse of power including malicious prosecution and misfeasance in public office
Negligence and related actions
Wrongful interference with land and goods
Human rights and discrimination
Suing the police: pre-action considerations
Bringing the action - issue of proceedings to exchange of witness statements
The civil action trial
ECHR (process of taking a case to Strasbourg)
Inquests, judicial review and other remedies
Part of the Preface from the book
It is the peculiar paradox of police misconduct cases that it is the very agents of the state who are notionally charged with the task of upholding law and order that are the alleged perpetrators of illegality and disorder. Almost uniquely among the numerous types of cases that come before the courts the complainant is in practice not only denied the protection of the agency that in other circumstances would impartially investigate and prosecute the wrongdoer but typically finds him- or herself ranged against one of the most powerful institutions in the land which can seem bent upon discrediting their version of events and vindicating its own officers. Against this background these cases can be especially challenging. Little wonder then that taking a stand against unlawful or abusive conduct by the police can seem lonely and frightening to the individual complainant.
Lawyers and advisers in this area can provide important support in community struggles for social, economic and political change, and for those groups and individuals who are singled out for police harassment. For complainants who are prepared to confront misconduct there can be significant dividends. Civil actions can provide compensation for groups and individuals who have been the direct victims of police illegality. But complaints and litigation can also expose misconduct to wider public scrutiny and serve to bring practices and patterns of police behaviour to the attention of those who would otherwise never hear of it. Action by complainants can also serve a wider purpose of holding the police to account and vindicating the rule of law. By demonstrating that members of the public are ready to exercise their rights, and that a body of lawyers and advisers have the expertise and ability to pursue those rights, it is possible to exert a powerful influence in curbing misconduct in the future if it can be demonstrated that the legal limits to police powers cannot be breached with impunity.
In this book we aim to explain the procedures and tactics of the two major routes to remedying police misconduct: police complaints and civil actions in the courts. Police complaints and disciplinary procedures are tightly controlled by a statutory framework of primary legislation, regulations and guidance. Civil actions against the police have highly individual rules and procedures due to the nature of the torts involved, the availability of exemplary and aggravated damages and, of course, the possibility of trial by jury. As well as describing the advantages, we have attempted to indicate the pitfalls of the two procedures and how best to avoid them.
Since the last edition of this book in 1995 the legal background to the field of police misconduct has been transformed. Among the more significant developments, the Human Rights Act 1998 has made Convention Rights deriving from the European Convention on Human Rights directly enforceable in the domestic courts. The effects of this are capable of reaching into almost every aspect of the law and practice of police misconduct and are still only beginning to be felt. In the previous year the landmark case of Thompson v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis  2 ALL ER 762, clarified the law on damages and removed much of the uncertainty inherent in leaving questions of quantum to juries in civil action cases.
In that case In two separate cases the issue arose as to the directions a judge should include in his summing up to assist a jury as to the appropriate amount of damages recoverable by a plaintiff in an action against the police for unlawful conduct.
In the first case, T was lawfully arrested in connection with a drink and driving offence. The police however used considerable and unnecessary force to place her in a cell, but contended that force was only used after T had refused to be searched. T was subsequently charged with assaulting an officer in the execution of his duty and was acquitted seven months later. Thereafter she commenced proceedings against the commissioner, claiming damages for false imprisonment and malicious prosecution. At the trial, the jury rejected the officers’ contentions and awarded T damages of £51,500, comprising £1,500 compensatory damages and £50,000 exemplary damages.
In the second case, H was physically assaulted and racially abused when he refused to allow three police officers to enter his house. He was arrested and detained for about 75 minutes, during which time his house was entered and some of his property removed. As a result of the incident, H, who had a predisposition to depression, suffered post-traumatic stress disorder. He subsequently commenced proceedings against the commissioner, claiming damages for wrongful arrest, false imprisonment and assault. The jury awarded H damages of £220,000, comprising £20,000 compensatory damages (including aggravated damages) and £200,000 exemplary damages.
The commissioner appealed against the award of damages in each case.
Held (1) When assessing damages awarded to members of the public for unlawful conduct against them by the police, juries should in future be given guidance by the judge as to the amount of damages regarded as appropriate in personal injury cases for particular injuries, and the figure which he considered it would be appropriate to award in the circumstances. The awards made by judges in personal injury cases were directly relevant, since actions against the police could contain a personal injury element, and where a claim was based on loss of liberty or the damaging effect of malicious prosecution, compensation was awarded for something akin to pain and suffering. In the instant cases, the directions to the jury were sufficient within the existing guidelines to give them the assistance they required. In T’s case, the award of £1,500 was not proportionate to the damage which she had suffered in view of the unlawful conduct following her initial arrest, which had continued for seven months, and the court would accordingly substitute a figure of £20,000. In H’s case, the court would not interfere with the award, since the consequences for him had been more serious than they would otherwise have been because of his underlying condition; John v MGN Ltd  2 All ER 35 applied.
(2) Where there was evidence to support a claim for exemplary damages, the jury should be told that it was possible, in exceptional cases, to award damages to punish the defendant where there had been conduct (including oppressive or arbitrary behaviour) by police officers which deserved exceptional remedy. Such damages were unlikely to be less than £5,000 and might be as much as £25,000, with an absolute maximum of £50,000 in cases where officers of at least the rank of superintendent had been directly involved in the misconduct. In T’s case, the court would have awarded a sum of £25,000 as exemplary damages, making a total award of £45,000; the commissioner’s appeal against the total award of £51,500 would however be dismissed, since the jury retained a margin of appreciation such that the court would not intervene unless the difference as to amount had been greater. In H’s case, although there was unprovoked violence involving a number of officers, the incident was over in a matter of hours and there was already an award of aggravated damages which had to be taken into account; the court would therefore reduce the total damages awarded from £220,000 to £35,000 and would accordingly allow the commissioner’s appeal.
Rantzen v Mirror Group Newspapers (1986) Ltd  4 All ER 975 and John v MGN Ltd  2 All ER 35 considered.
The 1999 Macpherson report on the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry contributed to the Police Reform Act 2002 which established the Independent Police Complaints Commission. The Act revolutionises the system of police complaints and for the first time allows for the investigation of the most serious complaints to be taken out of the hands of the police themselves and undertaken instead by genuinely independent investigators. The Macpherson report also led to changes to the race relations legislation in 2000 and 2003 - broadening the scope for actions for racial discrimination by the police. The Police Act 1997 and the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 nominally regulate but greatly broaden the scope for covert policing and surveillance. Constitutional changes to the organisation of the police have centralised the policing of terrorist and organised crime and consolidated the grip of the Home Secretary on police functions at both the national and local level. All this is set against a background of seemingly ever widening police powers justified by public concerns ranging from the threat of terrorist attacks to antisocial behaviour.
In addition, we have outlined other remedies which might be appropriate in cases of police misconduct. The whole work has been greatly expanded. The basic structure of the book follows the format of earlier editions starting with a consideration of the crucial decision of whether to sue or to complain, the first steps that need to be considered in all cases, a detailed description of the complaints and disciplinary systems, the civil causes of action, the practice and procedure of suing and the other remedies available in particular cases.
However new chapters have been added to incorporate additional material and to present the more detailed analysis of all the major causes of action in a more structured and useable way. We have aimed to provide practitioners with a thorough explanation of the most important legal remedies and to equip the reader with all the essentials for advising on the full range of procedures, strategies and tactics available.
The law is stated as at 13 March 2005 but in some places it has been possible to include later developments.
John Harrison Stephen Cragg Heather Williams
John Harrison is a solicitor and partner at Sharpe Pritchard in London. Stephen Cragg is a barrister at Doughty Street Chambers in London specialising in actions against the police and public law. Heather Williams is a barrister at Doughty Street Chambers in London specialising in civil liberties, actions against the police, human rights and discrimination law.
When it comes to establishing that the police have acted poorly it is essential to understand fundamental principles; whether you’re a lawyer putting your case to an officer in cross examination, or a lay person wishing to pursue a complaint, this book is a fabulous resource of information.
I read this book from an interesting perspective: not simply as a lawyer briefed to write a book review, but also (and coincidentally) as a private individual seeking to complain about police inaction regarding local anti-social behaviour issues; accordingly I had a healthy appetite for relevant information.
The introductory chapter has a distinct practical flavour which enthused me and I’m pleased to say pervades the whole work; this is vital in my view for a book of this nature where the reader’s primary motivation is likely to be a “need to know” rather than academic interest! The authors say that their aim is to guide lawyers and advisers through the law, practice and procedures of the remedies available to meet abuses of police powers. The two main remedies they consider are the procedure for complaining formally through the established system administered by the Independent Police Complaints Commission and pursuing a civil action. Importantly the tactical dimension is woven in to the text, so that the reader has a feel for how the full range of remedies can be blended together to achieve the desired objective.
The initial steps of case preparation is presented very clearly and chapter 2 contains an extraordinarily helpful insight into the workings of the local police station – a subject that many lawyers, advisors and lay people would like to know more about, but are too afraid to ask! This nuts and bolts approach includes detailed information about such areas as police officers’ note books and police station records: in other words the kind of practical information the reader might need to draw upon when preparing a case.
It is also important for potential complainants to appreciate that the police are controlled by a variety of different bodies. Chapter 3 unravels the main institutions that exercise control over the police; this information is crucial for anyone wishing to efficiently advance a complaint or case against the police. The office of police constable is explained clearly and pinpoints the nature of a police officer’s official status, authority, liability, duties and jurisdiction.
The approach the authors take to the procedure for making a complaint against the police is logical and importantly very practical. I was particularly impressed with the treatment the authors give to the process of local resolution. It’s explained simply and in such a way as to highlight clearly the weaknesses in the system; the reader is also put on notice of the possible tactics the police may use to encourage use of this informal mechanism. The chapter is well balanced and enlightening - it even offers help in distinguishing the genuine police apology from annoying management speak! I did wonder whether the chapter could be further enhanced with a section on press publicity; the pitfalls associated with such publicity and the extent to which it has the potential to interfere with the complaints procedure and/or subsequent litigation, might be useful to know.
The police may take disciplinary action against an officer as a result of a complaint of misconduct or indeed criminal proceedings may be commenced. These disciplinary procedures are traversed in explicit detail which gives the reader a practical feel for the procedure at a police misconduct hearing. The pros and cons of pursuing criminal proceedings against the police are considered and the mechanics of private prosecutions are explained well. The measured approach balances the advantages and disadvantages of litigation in the criminal courts. The process of the criminal trial, together with issues such as pre-trial disclosure from the police, is an area that perhaps could be developed further in the book. When it comes to the question of pursuing a remedy in the civil courts, the authors literally provide chapter and verse; causes of action are meticulously explained with very helpful advice on pre-trial preparation, preliminary matters and the course of the trial. Even the complainant seeking redress in the European Court of Human Rights is given adequate guidance on making an application, the initial procedure and the procedure before the court.
In each section the information is presented in a straightforward, no-nonsense manner across a book of almost 700 pages. It covers an incredible amount of practical detail and is essential reading for anyone dealing with a case of alleged police misconduct. I absorbed the information in this book like a sponge – it’s the very antithesis of a turgid tome – the information is relevant, logical and leaps off the pages. In short it’s a very readable law book, which in my experience is a rare beast indeed!
Identification: Investigation, Trial and Scientific Evidence
Author: Paul Bogan
Publishers: Legal Action Group
Price £37 RRP UK
Publication Date: 2004
This book provides an analysis of the powers and duties of police in the collection of identification evidence, and a comprehensive guide to the various sources of identification evidence in the trial process. It offers an insight into the methodology and admissibility of scientific and other expert means of personal identification.
Police practice and criminal law in this field are now highly developed, yet as the abundance of identification cases in the Court of Appeal each year attests, they continue to generate controversy and debate.
Part one, which will be the most germane to the police, is concerned principally with Code D of the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984, which governs police practice in the investigation of identification cases. The Code is currently in its fifth edition. It has been considerably refined since its introduction and reflects the fact that video identification is now used in all but the rarest cases. The Author tells us, "the identification parade has become a relic of the past, likely only to be seen in old movies". I would add, also in the mind of retired uniform Inspectors who recall the challenge they presented in the middle of a busy day.
The present rules concerning the mandatory requirement for an identification procedure when identity is disputed are more sophisticated than in earlier editions and, for street identifications, the procedure is vastly more comprehensive than hitherto. Code D also governs police powers to take fingerprints and samples from suspects. Those powers have been increased substantially in recent years, notably by provisions brought into force under the Criminal Justice Act 2003. Their use must now also be considered against European Convention jurisprudence.
The book contents include:
Historical context and development of identification evidence
Authoritative commentary on PACE Code D
Video and other identification procedures
Taking of samples, fingerprints and photographs
Admissibility and exclusion of identification evidence at trial
Guidance on jury warnings and directions
DNA analysis, facial mapping, skin impressions, voice identification
Code D (new fifth edition) PACE 1984
Guide to the impact of the Criminal Justice Act 2003, JSB specimen directions
Pro forma notices to suspects (Metropolitan police)
It is a good idea to have one legal textbook dealing exclusively with identification evidence in one comprehensive and affordable volume. It includes all the relevant legislation and case-law.
As a uniformed Inspector for the last 6 years of my service I conducted many ID parades as the ID Officer. The IO must be a uniformed Inspector not connected with the case. I always found ID parades very challenging and interesting. I considered that if I had conducted the parade 100% and the suspect had been picked out, that was job satisfaction at it’s best. With the advent of video ID now, I would have thought it much less interesting and with less job satisfaction.
I personally kept comprehensive and contemporaneous notes on every aspect of the parade as well as the official proformas, copies of which are reproduced in this book. During my service the main method was an ID parade, or often a street (group) ID was arranged. In my case I always used an underground station, eg the escalator at St Paul’s or a shopping arcade with a walk-through such as the one near Liverpool Street railway station.
Now of course times have moved on and video Ids are the main method followed by a parade. The greatest difficulty we encountered was persuading sufficient foils to spare the time and come in off the street to assist us. We actually paid them expenses for their time – so often the unemployed were more willing. Also the YMCA and YWCA Hostels were a good source. I recall paying 15/- (75p).
The Police Service in the main will of course continue to rely upon the Police Manuals, Internal Force Orders and Home Office Circulars. This book is certainly a ‘must’ for solicitors involved with identification and I would hope that all forces have a copy available in their law libraries and training departments for reference purposes.