UK control orders ruling [UK HC]

UK control orders ruling [UK HC]

Secretary of State for the Home Department v JJ & Ors [2006] EWHC 1623 (Admin), June 28, 2006, UK High Court of Justice Queen's Bench Division Adminitrative Court, in the matter of the Prevention of Terrorism Act 2005, Mr. Justice Jeremy Sullivan [ruling that control orders authorizing the electronic monitoring or house arrest of terror suspects where there is not enough evidence to prosecute or convict them violate Article 5 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which protects against indefinite detentions]. Excerpt:

The importance of protecting members of the public from the risk of terrorism is not in doubt, but the importance of that objective is not a reason for the court to be less inclined to classify the obligations in these control orders as a deprivation of, rather than a restriction upon, liberty. The [European] Convention [on Human Rights] makes express provision in Article 15 for there to be a derogation from (inter alia) Article 5 "In time of war or other public emergency threatening the life of the nation". That facility is carried forward into the Act, which applies the mechanism of a "designated derogation" under section 14 of the 1998 Act: see section 1(10) of the Act and the procedures for making derogating control orders (above). In the absence of a derogation under Article 15 of the Convention the respondents are entitled to the full protection of Article 5, and there is no justification for any attempt to water down that protection in response to the threat of terrorism.

Read the full text of the judgment. Reported in JURIST's Paper Chase here.