Challenges to Police Powers

The police and other investigating authorities have wide powers to prevent crime and to keep tabs on those who they suspect may carry out criminal offences in future.  We act swiftly and forcefully for our clients to ensure that those powers are not abused.

Unnecessary arrests and malicious prosecutions can cause great personal and professional damage to an individual, even if the case is dropped.  Entries which remain on police databases can hamper someone's career, impede their freedom of travel and infringe their right to private and family life.

Our lawyers have huge experience of police station work and also extensive expertise in claims for compensation where police powers are exceeded.  We have mounted many successful challenges to the unlawful exercise of powers by detaining and prosecutorial bodies.

Our work in this area includes:

  • Challenging the use of arrest powers where the individual is willing to cooperate voluntarily, particularly where an arrest would damage someone’s career (doctors, childcare workers, teachers, financial professionals, etc.)
  •  Challenging the use and scope of search warrants
  • Making representations to the CPS not to charge a client at all
  • Applying for personal information to be deleted, such as DNA, fingerprints, photographs and entries on the Police National Computer
  • Bringing civil law proceedings for false imprisonment and breach of the right to liberty
  • Advising individuals on remedies in respect of unlawful and unjustified cautions
  • Suing police and customs for malicious prosecution
  • Challenging the police and Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) over irrelevant or inaccurate information on Enhanced Criminal Record Certificates
  • Challenging unlawful disclosure of confidential information to other government departments or to dangerous individuals.

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