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Fahy and GMP avoid judicial review

High court clears Greater Manchester Police over terrorism detainees

Published on July 23rd 2010.

Fahy and GMP avoid judicial review

Peter Fahy, the chief constable of Greater Manchester Police (GMP) has avoided a judicial review for the alleged unlawful detention of three people GMP arrested under the Terrorism Act.

The judgement, by Lord Justice Laws and Mr Justice Coulson, said the claims were “so weak on the material before the court as to be properly regarded as fanciful.”

Sultan Sher, Mohammed Farooq and Mohammed Sharif were arrested on April 8, 2009, along with nine others across the North West, in a series of morning raids authorised by GMP.

They were then detained without charge until 21 April by West Yorkshire Police while GMP obtained search warrants for a number of addresses connected to the three from Manchester Magistrates Court.

When the men were released, they were served with deportation orders and in September 2009, all three voluntarily returned to Pakistan. They began judicial review proceedings last June, although the High Court struck out claims over the legality of their treatment earlier this week.

The men claimed they were never told why they were being detained and argued that the detention contravened their human rights. They were also seeking damages in the High Court claim, which also included the chief constable of West Yorkshire Police, Manchester Magistrates Court, the City of Westminster Magistrates Court and the Secretary of State of the Home Department.

The claims against GMP were that the arrest was unlawful, as were the entry search and seizures at the men’s homes.

GMP argued the claims were not a matter for judicial review and that the claimants had means to pursue claims of wrongful arrest and unlawful imprisonment through private law. They maintained there were “reasonable grounds” for the arrest and detention of the claimants, according to a judgement published this week, because they were “reasonably suspected of involvement in the preparation, commission or instigation of an act of terrorism.”

The GMP also argued that the claimants were given “sufficient information to understand why they were being arrested and detained.”

The judgement, by Lord Justice Laws and Mr Justice Coulson, said the claims were “so weak on the material before the court as to be properly regarded as fanciful.”

A North West Counter Terrorism Unit spokesperson said: "This review found the police actions were legal and proportionate. It is imperative we act on any information we receive that indicates the public may be at risk. Public safety has always been our main priority and officers face difficult decisions to avoid putting the public at risk."

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AnonymousJuly 25th 2010.

Most of the background of for this is in the public domain. Maybe Man Con should tell us more of the story especially since the judgment says the applicants had more appropriate means of seeking redress.

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