Court dismisses appellants claim that her immigration detention was unlawful


Re: O, R (on the application of) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2014] EWCA Civ 990

The appellant was diagnosed with severe post-traumatic stress disorder and claimed her immigration detention was contrary to the Hardial Singh principles and contrary to paragraph 55.10 of the Enforcement Instructions Guidance.

Dismissing her appeal, the Court noted that the decision as to whether detention was lawful could only be impugned on traditional public law grounds, and it was not for the Court to act as the primary decision maker. The Court further noted that paragraph 55.10 only required the SSHD to ‘satisfactorily’ mange her condition, which meant the SSHD had to keep her condition stable and did not mean providing her with the best possible treatment. Although the Court criticised the SSHD’s failure to take account of her medical reports during detention reviews, given her risk of absconding and the risk of harm to others her detention was justified and at best she may have received nominal damages if the Court let the case proceed.

Hugh Southey QC was involved in this case.