The inclusion in an enhanced criminal record certificate of details of an individual’s acquittal on a charge of rape was a proportionate interference with that individual’s rights under ECHR art.8. In so deciding, the Supreme Court clarified when an appellate court could make a fresh determination as to proportionality, noted the lack of guidance to potential employers on how to treat ECRCs containing details of acquittals, and indicated that careful thought should be given to the value of disclosing allegations that had been tested in court and resulted in acquittal.
As a starting point, as a matter of general principle, a suspect had a reasonable expectation of privacy in relation to a police investigation, which was not removed merely because the information had reached the hands of the media. The BBC was liable to Sir Cliff Richard for infringing his privacy rights by broadcasting the fact that he was the subject of a police investigation and that his property was being searched in connection with the investigation. The BBC was ordered to pay general damages, including aggravated damages, of £210,000.
Search warrants issued for the homes and business premises of directors of two companies suspected of bribing an employee of a large company in order to obtain lucrative work were quashed as they had not been sufficiently precise in describing the material sought, and in one instance had been based on an error of fact.
A senior investigating police officer had maliciously prosecuted three men for murder when presenting a case to the CPS based on the evidence of a witness he had prompted to implicate them. They were entitled to damages for the loss caused by that malicious prosecution and the officer’s misfeasance in public office.
The court suggested changes to improve the procedure for police disclosure in family proceedings.